Get the Most Out of Maryland’s MOLST Form

If you live in Maryland and have a life care plan, you may have heard of something known as a “MOLST” form. If you’ve never heard of this form, have no worries. We’re going to explain exactly what this form is and how to utilize it in your estate plan.

What is a MOLST Form?

MOLST stands for Maryland Order for Life Sustaining Treatment. A MOLST form signifies written medical orders by a physician or nurse practitioner regarding life-sustaining treatments, according to The objective is for the MOLST form to be a portable and enduring medical order form that increases the likelihood that your wishes to receive, or decline, certain types of medical care will be honored.

Keep in mind two things: (1) a MOLST form is NOT an Advance Medical Directive and (2) it is NOT a form prepared by an individual in the normal course of events, such as during the signing of a Trust, Will, Powers of Attorney, etc. Instead, a MOLST form is exclusively a physician’s directive/doctor’s order.

Why MOLST Forms Were Created

The motive behind implementing MOLST is good. These forms will help to consolidate important medical information into orders that will be valid and accepted across the healthcare spectrum. This should make things easier for you and your loved ones during the final days of your life. It will standardizes definitions, remind medical providers of available treatment options, and improve the chances that your wishes about life-sustaining treatments will be honored by a medical provider.


This form is significant since, as of 2013, a MOLST form replaces the EMS/DNR (“Do Not Resuscitate Form”) form. If you have an EMS/DNR form, don’t fret – EMS/DNR forms still remain valid and will be honored by emergency medical services (EMS) providers. But keep in mind, if you don’t have a valid MOLST form or EMS/DNR Order and call for ambulance service, but are unable to communicate your health care wishes, then you will receive restorative interventions under the statewide Maryland Medical Protocols for EMS Providers.

Tips on Properly Creating a MOLST Form

A MOLST form should be signed by a doctor or nurse practitioner and each time a MOLST form is completed, a copy should be given to you or your authorized decision maker within 48 hours, or sooner, if you are discharged or transferred.

Speak to an Attorney

If you are a Maryland resident and want to learn more about MOLST forms, contact an experienced estate planning attorney in your area. With any new form or directive, there are bound to be questions and unaddressed issues. This is why sitting down with an experienced attorney makes sense.