There’s been a big jump in the number of elderly people making living wills and other end-of-life directives.
Dr. Maria Silveira is a University of Michigan researcher. She says between 2000 and 2010, the percentage of elderly Americans with living wills or who gave a loved one power of attorney in health matters rose from 47% to 72%.
Silveira says the change may reflect different generational attitudes.
“I think this generation of older folks, Baby Boomers in particular, are more inclined to take charge,” says Silveira.
As a physician, Silveira says she prefers working with a person given power of attorney to make medical decisions for a loved one.
She says living wills sometimes don’t address important issues.