Advance care planning

Advance care planning is about making decisions regarding your future health care, in case there is a situation where you may not be able to voice your preferences or make decisions for yourself. 

What does advance care planning involve?

The process of advance care planning involves: 

  • Discussing your values and what quality of life means to you, so your healthcare team understands what is most important to you.
  • Making decisions about treatments you want or don't want, including where you'd like to receive care, such as at home if possible.
  • Completing an Advance Care Directive, a document that outlines your healthcare preferences in detail. This directive will guide your care if you cannot communicate your decisions yourself.
  • Appointing a substitute decision-maker, who is someone you trust to make health care decisions on your behalf if you're unable to do so.
Advance care planning documents can range from simple to detailed, and you can include any religious, spiritual or cultural beliefs that might influence your healthdecisions.

With the exception of the Australian Capital Territory (ACT), Advance Care Directives come into effect only if you're unable to make decisions for yourself. Creating an Advance Care Directive requires you to have capacity to make clear decisions, as it is a legally binding document. You can update or change your Advance Care Directive at any time to reflect your current wishes.
For more information or guidance on advance care planning, resources such as Advance Care Planning Australia, My Values, or seeking independent legal advice can be helpful:


Advanced Care Planning

Information about planning for your future health care, including advance care directives

1300 208 582  

 My values

A set of specially constructed statements designed to help you identify, consider and communicate your wishes about the medical treatment you would want in the later stages of life.

Requires registration.