Advanced Directives/Medical Law

  • Location: Wilford Hall Ambulatory Surgical Center, Room #7A65
  • Phone: (210) 292-7808
  • DSN: 554-7808
  • POC: 59 MDW/JA

What is an Advanced Directive?

As a patient, you will always have control over your own medical care so long as you are competent and able to communicate your wishes. Should you become unable to communicate your wishes, advanced medical directives provide guidance to your providers on what types of medical care you would like to receive.

There are two different types of advanced medical directives: Medical Powers of Attorney & Living Wills. 

  • A Medical Power of Attorney appoints someone to make medical decisions for you in the event that you become incapacitated and unable to make your own decisions. It can also authorize someone to assist in facilitating your treatment, such as picking up your prescriptions from the pharmacy.  
  • A Living Will is a document that becomes effective only if you have a terminal condition. It communicates your desires to your provider if you are incapacitated and unable to communicate your wishes, including information on what type of life-sustaining treatment you would like (or not like) as well as your organ donation preferences.

Advanced medical directives can provide peace of mind knowing that your wishes on medical treatment will be communicated, both for you, as well as for your family.

Both types of medical directives can be prepared at Joint Base San Antonio legal offices and are free of charge to all active duty personnel, retirees and their dependents, including dependent survivors. Reservists and National Guard who are on federal active duty, along with their dependents, may also obtain these services free of charge. Preparation is primarily done by appointment; please contact the legal office of your choosing for more information or to schedule an appointment.

Where to go for assistance

Educational materials and forms to help patients execute their wishes regarding future medical care are available through Wilford Hall Ambulatory Surgical Center Admissions and Dispositions (located in Room 1E50), Outpatient Records, or (for DoD beneficiaries) the Joint Base San Antonio Legal Offices:

1701 Kenly Ave., Suite 106
JBSA-Lackland, TX 78236
(210) 671-3367

JBSA-Fort Sam Houston
2422 Stanley Road (Bldg. 134)
JBSA-Fort Sam Houston, TX 78234
(210) 808-0169

1 Washington Circle Suite 6 (1st floor of Taj Mahal building)
JBSA-Randolph, TX 78148
(210) 652-6781

You can also find more information about Advanced Medical Directives at the Air Force Legal Assistance Website.

What to do after you complete a directive for future medical care

Please inform your provider that you have completed a directive for future medical care. Make sure a copy is in your outpatient medical record. Also bring a copy with you for any surgery (inpatient or outpatient) or other admission to the hospital.
Medical Appointment Line:

JBSA SAPR Hotline: 210-808-7272
DoD Safe Helpline: 1-877-995-5247

Chaplain Services: 210-292-7373

Privacy Practices

Learn more about how we protect your privacy, how medical information about you may be used and disclosed, and how you can get access to this information. Notice of Privacy Practices