U.S. laws on advanced end-of-life planning pose barriers for socially isolated patients and those with low literacy because they are written at a reading level above 12th grade, require witnesses and do not honor oral advance directives or signatures of health care providers as proxies, according to a report in the Annals of Internal Medicine. Researchers urged states to amend their laws to include oral directives, broaden the criteria for health proxies and remove the witness requirement.

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