People often misunderstand the difference between a DNR order and a Living Will. Those in good health and just starting retirement often tell me they want a DNR. In nearly all cases, they are confusing DNR with a Living Will.
 
A DNR—do not resuscitate—order means medical personnel should not revive the person. It is ideal for people with a poor quality of life, e.g., those with dementia, terminal cancer or other illness, etc. DNRs work well for people who upon revival will come back to a deteriorated and often painful physical or mental state. DNRs are not typically appropriate for people currently in good physical and mental health.
 
A Living Will serves a different purpose. It allows a person to clarify their wishes in the event of a (1) terminal illness or incurable condition with death imminent or (2) persistent vegetative state. In such a situation, nearly all of our clients do not wish to receive life-sustaining treatment—beyond comfort care—that would serve only to artificially delay the moment of death.  That is my personal choice as well. However, few with a Living Will should also have a DNR. Because I have a good quality of life, if I have a heart attack tomorrow, I would like to be revived. We find that upon full understanding of the differences between a DNR and the Living Will, nearly all of our clients come to the same conclusion. That is why a DNR is inappropriate for most people.
 
Ask your clients if they have a Living Will? Ask if they have a DNR? You may find that some clients have both when they really should have only the former.