If I get really sick, I do not want to be resuscitated by CPR only to suffer longer or to artificially prolong my life. Is there any way to avoid CPR when I don’t want it?

Every person is presumed to consent to having CPR performed on him/her unless that person has executed a Do-Not-Resuscitate (DNR) order, a medical power of attorney, or a living will which indicates that he/she does not want CPR. Some people decide that they do not want CPR because in certain situations they feel that CPR may cause more pain and unnecessarily prolong an inevitable death. If you decide that you do not want CPR performed on you, you can include a request in your living will that you do not want to be resuscitated. This request must be followed by a DNR order from a treating physician. The DNR order states that in the event of cardiac arrest, CPR is not to be administered.  

For more information, see: Do Not Resuscitate Act, W. Va. Code §§ 16-30C-1 to -16 (2015); WVU Center for Health Ethics and Law, http://www.wvethics.org (last visited June 1, 2015); West Virginia Center for End-of-Life Care, http://www.wvendoflife.org (last visited June 1, 2015).