Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen Issues Formal Opinion to Waupaca County Corporation Counsel Jeffrey J. Siewert Concerning Physician Orders for Life-Sustaining Treatment (POLST) Forms

Dec 16 2014
Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen Issues Formal Opinion to Waupaca County Corporation Counsel Jeffrey J. Siewert Concerning Physician Orders for Life-Sustaining Treatment (POLST) Forms

 

MADISON — Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen issued a formal opinion today to Waupaca County Corporation Counsel Jeffrey J. Siewert concerning two questions: whether the civil and criminal immunity for healthcare providers who rely on certain statutory instruments (including declarations to physicians, do-not-resuscitate orders, or healthcare power-of-attorney instruments) applies to providers who rely on Physician Orders for Life-Sustaining Treatment (POLST) forms; and whether POLST forms may be considered for any other purpose, such as evidence of an individual’s medical wishes in a judicial proceeding. Van Hollen concluded that reliance on a POLST form would not trigger the immunity for a healthcare provider.  Van Hollen further concluded that, depending on the circumstances, a court might consider a POLST form as evidence of a person’s wishes about medical care.

 

A copy of the Attorney General’s opinion is available at the following link:  Opinion.

 

A copy of the opinion request is available at the following link:  Request.

 

Formal and informal opinions issued by Attorney General Van Hollen are available here.