A living will is a written document which informs your physician about your wishes regarding the life-sustaining measures that you wish to take place if you are in a near death or persistent vegetative state. These measures may include treatments or machines used to keeps your heart, lungs, or other vital organs working even if they can not do so on their own.
A living will goes into effect only when two physicians agree in writing you are either near death or in a persistent vegetative state that is not reversible and you can not understand or express health care choices on your own. One alternative to the use of a living will is the implementation of a Power of Attorney for Health Care.