2021 Florida Statutes (Including 2021B Session)
765.101 Definitions.—As used in this chapter:
(1) “Advance directive” means a witnessed written document or oral statement in which instructions are given by a principal or in which the principal’s desires are expressed concerning any aspect of the principal’s health care or health information, and includes, but is not limited to, the designation of a health care surrogate, a living will, or an anatomical gift made pursuant to part V of this chapter.
(2) “Attending physician” means the physician who has primary responsibility for the treatment and care of the patient while the patient receives such treatment or care in a hospital as defined in s. 395.002(13).
(3) “Close personal friend” means any person 18 years of age or older who has exhibited special care and concern for the patient, and who presents an affidavit to the health care facility or to the primary physician stating that he or she is a friend of the patient; is willing and able to become involved in the patient’s health care; and has maintained such regular contact with the patient so as to be familiar with the patient’s activities, health, and religious or moral beliefs.
(4) “End-stage condition” means an irreversible condition that is caused by injury, disease, or illness which has resulted in progressively severe and permanent deterioration, and which, to a reasonable degree of medical probability, treatment of the condition would be ineffective.
(5) “Health care” means care, services, or supplies related to the health of an individual and includes, but is not limited to, preventive, diagnostic, therapeutic, rehabilitative, maintenance, or palliative care, and counseling, service, assessment, or procedure with respect to the individual’s physical or mental condition or functional status or that affect the structure or function of the individual’s body.
(6) “Health care decision” means:
(a) Informed consent, refusal of consent, or withdrawal of consent to any and all health care, including life-prolonging procedures and mental health treatment, unless otherwise stated in the advance directives.
(b) The decision to apply for private, public, government, or veterans’ benefits to defray the cost of health care.
(c) The right of access to health information of the principal reasonably necessary for a health care surrogate or proxy to make decisions involving health care and to apply for benefits.
(d) The decision to make an anatomical gift pursuant to part V of this chapter.
(7) “Health care facility” means a hospital, nursing home, hospice, home health agency, or health maintenance organization licensed in this state, or any facility subject to part I of chapter 394.
(8) “Health care provider” or “provider” means any person licensed, certified, or otherwise authorized by law to administer health care in the ordinary course of business or practice of a profession.
(9) “Health information” means any information, whether oral or recorded in any form or medium, as defined in 45 C.F.R. s. 160.103 and the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996, 42 U.S.C. s. 1320d, as amended, that:
(a) Is created or received by a health care provider, health care facility, health plan, public health authority, employer, life insurer, school or university, or health care clearinghouse; and
(b) Relates to the past, present, or future physical or mental health or condition of the principal; the provision of health care to the principal; or the past, present, or future payment for the provision of health care to the principal.
(10) “Incapacity” or “incompetent” means the patient is physically or mentally unable to communicate a willful and knowing health care decision. For the purposes of making an anatomical gift, the term also includes a patient who is deceased.
(11) “Informed consent” means consent voluntarily given by a person after a sufficient explanation and disclosure of the subject matter involved to enable that person to have a general understanding of the treatment or procedure and the medically acceptable alternatives, including the substantial risks and hazards inherent in the proposed treatment or procedures, and to make a knowing health care decision without coercion or undue influence.
(12) “Life-prolonging procedure” means any medical procedure, treatment, or intervention, including artificially provided sustenance and hydration, which sustains, restores, or supplants a spontaneous vital function. The term does not include the administration of medication or performance of medical procedure, when such medication or procedure is deemed necessary to provide comfort care or to alleviate pain.
(13) “Living will” or “declaration” means:
(a) A witnessed document in writing, voluntarily executed by the principal in accordance with s. 765.302; or
(b) A witnessed oral statement made by the principal expressing the principal’s instructions concerning life-prolonging procedures.
(14) “Minor’s principal” means a principal who is a natural guardian as defined in s. 744.301(1); legal custodian; or, subject to chapter 744, legal guardian of the person of a minor.
(15) “Persistent vegetative state” means a permanent and irreversible condition of unconsciousness in which there is:
(a) The absence of voluntary action or cognitive behavior of any kind.
(b) An inability to communicate or interact purposefully with the environment.
(16) “Physician” means a person licensed pursuant to chapter 458 or chapter 459.
(17) “Primary physician” means a physician designated by an individual or the individual’s surrogate, proxy, or agent under a durable power of attorney as provided in chapter 709, to have primary responsibility for the individual’s health care or, in the absence of a designation or if the designated physician is not reasonably available, a physician who undertakes the responsibility.
(18) “Principal” means a competent adult executing an advance directive and on whose behalf health care decisions are to be made or health care information is to be received, or both.
(19) “Proxy” means a competent adult who has not been expressly designated to make health care decisions for a particular incapacitated individual, but who, nevertheless, is authorized pursuant to s. 765.401 to make health care decisions for such individual.
(20) “Reasonably available” means readily able to be contacted without undue effort and willing and able to act in a timely manner considering the urgency of the patient’s health care needs.
(21) “Surrogate” means any competent adult expressly designated by a principal to make health care decisions and to receive health information. The principal may stipulate whether the authority of the surrogate to make health care decisions or to receive health information is exercisable immediately without the necessity for a determination of incapacity or only upon the principal’s incapacity as provided in s. 765.204.
(22) “Terminal condition” means a condition caused by injury, disease, or illness from which there is no reasonable medical probability of recovery and which, without treatment, can be expected to cause death.
History.—s. 2, ch. 92-199; s. 3, ch. 94-183; s. 46, ch. 96-169; s. 16, ch. 99-331; s. 3, ch. 2001-250; s. 131, ch. 2001-277; s. 104, ch. 2006-1; s. 28, ch. 2006-178; s. 2, ch. 2015-153; s. 14, ch. 2021-112.