The New Mexico Living Will is a document that works like a combination between an advance healthcare directive and a power of attorney. This document allows an individual, known as a Declarant, to list the life-prolonging procedures that they will and will not consent to if they ever fell into a terminally ill or incapacitated state and can no longer communicate this information on their own. This document also gives the Declarant the ability to name someone else who will make important healthcare decisions if a situation ever arises that is not outlined in the living will. In New Mexico, all living will documents must conform to Chapter 24, Article 7A (New Mexico Uniform Health Care Decisions Act) which states that all Declarants must be of sound mind when creating this document. Unlike many other states, New Mexico allows a living will to be an oral agreement instead of requiring the agreement to be in writing. These agreements, written or oral, become effective only when the Declarant is no longer able to make healthcare decisions on their own.
The first step that the Declarant will take to complete their written living will be to establish themselves as the Declarant. This will be done by providing their full name, gender, complete address, and telephone number. Next, the Declarant will appoint an Advocate by providing their full name, address, and phone number. Because health emergencies are often unexpected, it is wise to appoint an alternate Advocate in the event that the primary Advocate is unavailable or unreachable in the time of need. The alternate Advocate may be appointed by providing the same type of information that was provided for the primary. The next section will detail the consents and refusals that the Declarant wishes to record. This section will also cover other related information such as physician information and anatomical donations. Finally, the Declarant will date and sign the living will, and have it signed by two (2) witnesses.