Recently, Chief Probate Judge Richard Garcia of the Ingham County Probate Court urged the public to prepare for the vaccination of incapacitated family members located in nursing homes and long-term care facilities. If your loved one is incapacitated, cannot give consent for the vaccine, and does not have a proper power of attorney appointing a patient advocate in place, you must petition the local probate court to approve a temporary guardian to consent for the vaccine. If he/she has a proper power of attorney, his/her patient advocate may give consent for the vaccine on his/her behalf without the court’s intervention.
If your loved one does not have the proper paperwork, Ingham County Probate Court has a plan in place to rush petitions for temporary guardianships for the purpose for approval of a COVID vaccine. “While many residents of nursing homes and family members have already taken the necessary legal steps to allow for important medical decisions to be made on their behalf, the court wants to make sure there are no delays in vaccinating vulnerable populations,” said Chief Probate Judge Garcia. There is a new procedure in place for emergency guardianship petitions for a prompt turnaround for the consent for COVID vaccines. You should contact an attorney to ensure your loved one receives his/her vaccine in a timely manner.