Free Materials to Help Missourians Create Advance Care Directives

The Missouri Bar and Volunteer Attorneys Partner to Assist Missourians for National Healthcare Decisions Day on April 16 

JEFFERSON CITY, MO – Missourians can easily set up their own durable power of attorney for health care thanks to free materials provided by The Missouri Bar. The organization is joining other national, state and community groups to mark Wednesday, April 16, as National Healthcare Decisions Day. In its seventh year, the annual effort brings these groups together to educate the public about the importance of making advance health care decisions and empowering them to complete an advance care directive.

Missouri Bar President Jack Brady, of Kansas City, says studies show only one in three Americans have an advance care directive, but that National Healthcare Decisions Day offers Missourians a great opportunity to get their end of life care wishes in place.

“The Missouri Bar and volunteer attorneys across the state are providing information and tools for the public to talk about their wishes with family, friends and health care providers, and execute written advance directives in accordance with Missouri laws,” Brady said. “National Healthcare Decisions Day helps make sure that fewer families and health care providers will have to struggle with making difficult health care decisions in the absence of guidance from the patient. With an advance directive, your family and health care providers will be better equipped to honor your wishes when the time comes to do so.”

The Missouri Bar offers a Durable Power of Attorney for Health Care and a Health Care Directive, in English and Spanish, at no charge to Missourians. The forms are available online at http://www.mobar.org/publications/dpa/ or by calling 573-635-4128.

Volunteer attorneys across the state will meet with members of the public on Wednesday to assist them in executing written advance directives in accordance with Missouri laws. Events will take place in St. Louis, Kansas City and Springfield. A full listing of events, times and locations is available at http://www.mobar.org/nhdd.htm.

The National Healthcare Decisions Day, now in its seventh year, seeks to address the public’s misunderstanding about advance health care planning and directives. To date, more than 80 national organizations and 700 state and community organizations participant. To learn more, visit www.nhdd.org.

The Missouri Bar is a statewide organization that is dedicated to improving the legal profession, the law and the administration of justice for all Missourians. Created in 1944 by order of the Supreme Court of Missouri, it serves all 30,000 of Missouri’s practicing attorneys. To achieve its mission, The Missouri Bar provides a wide range of services and resources to its members, as well as the media, educators and the citizens of Missouri. To learn more about The Missouri Bar, visit www.mobar.org.

MoBar Quick Info

Organization and Purpose: The Missouri Bar is the statewide organization that all Missouri lawyers must belong to if they practice law. The Missouri Bar was created in 1944 by order of the Supreme Court of Missouri. It is considered an instrumentality of the state, not a private association nor a state agency. Its mission is to improve the legal profession, the administration of justice, and law on behalf of the public.

Member Size: Currently, the bar is comprised of about 32,000 members.

Staff Size: The executive director, Sebrina Barrett, supervises a staff of 50 employees. Click here to see a Staff Directory

Budget: Approximately $10 million. No tax dollars are used to support Missouri Bar activities. Most money is derived from dues that lawyers pay; some is derived from CLE programs and publications, grants and The Bar Foundation.

Governance: The Board of Governors of The Missouri Bar determines policies and sets the course of action for the state bar to follow. The 45 members of the Board are elected by bar members. The Board elects a president, president-elect and vice president to serve as officers of the bar.

Sections and Committees: The Missouri Bar offers more than 50 substantive law committees for its members to join. It also has two sections: a Family Law Section, and the Young Lawyers' Section.

Location: The Missouri Bar Center is located in Jefferson City, at 326 Monroe St.

Missouri Bar Resources and Activities: The Missouri Bar provides a wide variety of services and resources, not only to its members, but also to the news media, school teachers and the citizens of Missouri. These include: CLE programs and publications, an Annual Meeting, a Solo and Small Firm Conference, teachers’ programs, committee meetings and extensive services for attorneys. The bar also administers a minimum continuing legal education requirement for attorneys.