A Rhode Island Living Will is a document that allows a person to provide a written declaration of their healthcare wishes if they ever fall into a terminally ill or incapacitated state. In this document, an individual will provide a list of consents and refusals to various life-prolonging medical treatments and procedures. Some of these procedures and treatments may include CPR, blood transfusions, feeding tubes, hydration tubes, etc. In Rhode Island, Chapter 23-4.11 covers all living wills written in the state. These statutes grant those who create declarations, known as Declarants, to dictate any procedure that would delay the dying process. These statutes do not, however, allow a living will to dictate necessary pain alleviation and comfort care. These statutes also require all Declarants to be at least 18 years old, and for the document to be signed by the Declarant in the presence of two (2) witnesses who are of no relation. Furthermore, these documents are ineffective if the Declarant is pregnant and likely to have a live birth.
In order to complete a living will in Rhode Island, the first piece of information that will be provided will be the Declarant's information. This will include his or her full name, address, gender, and phone number. Next, the Declarant will appoint his or her Advocate by providing their first and last name, address, and phone number. In the next section, the Declarant will detail which procedures and treatments they will and will not consent to. This section will also include information on his or her primary care physician and any anatomical donations. Once all of the Declarant's wishes have been listed, he or she will sign in the presence of two unrelated witnesses so the document can be forwarded to their doctor.