What is Advance Care Planning
If you are approaching your end of life such as being diagnosed with a terminal illness, then you should consider recording your wishes for your care and support. This is called Advance Care planning.
There is no set way of planning ahead, but starting the conversation with your partner, family, carers and health professionals is probably the best way to start
An advance statement can cover any aspect of your future health or social care. It is not legally binding, but people caring for you must take your advance statement into consideration when caring for you. An advance statement could include -
- how you want any religious or spiritual beliefs to be reflected in your care
- where you would like to be cared for – for example, at home or in a hospital, a nursing home, or a hospice
- how you like to do things – for example, if you prefer a shower instead of a bath, or like to sleep with the light on
- concerns about practical issues – for example, who will look after your dog if you become ill
You can make sure people know about your wishes by talking about them. By writing your advance statement down, you can help to make things clear to your family, carers and anybody involved in your care.
You may want to consider an Advance Decision to Refuse Treatment (ADRT) An Advance Decision is legally binding and ensures that any treatments you receive are in line with your wishes.
You may want appoint a lasting power of attorney who will be able to make decisions for you when you are not able to (you lack mental capacity)
The National Council for Palliative Care have a guide to planning for your future care which has lots of information you may find useful when considering your options.
The new ReSPECT documentation (Recommended Summary Plan for Emergency Care and Treatment) has been introduced in Hull. This document is an alternative process for discussing, making and recording recommendations about care and treatment in a future crisis, including CPR.
It also focuses on treatments that should be considered for you, as well as those that are not wanted or that would not work in your situation
NHS Choices have also created an End of life guide for people who are approaching the end of their life and people
who are caring for others who are approaching the end of their life.