Advance Care Planning

We understand that discussing end-of-life care can be a sensitive and challenging topic. However, planning for the future is an essential part of ensuring that your wishes are respected and that you receive the care that aligns with your values and preferences.

Advanced care planning is a proactive process that allows you to make and record decisions about your healthcare ahead of time, ensuring that your loved ones and healthcare providers understand your wishes, even if you are unable to communicate them yourself.

Planning now for your future health care can help ensure you get the medical care you want and that someone you trust will be there to make decisions for you.

What is Advanced Care Planning?

Advanced care planning involves making decisions about the healthcare you would want to receive if you become unable to communicate your wishes. It goes beyond simply stating preferences for medical treatments; it encompasses your values, goals, and priorities for care at the end of life. This process allows you to appoint a healthcare proxy or surrogate decision-maker who can advocate for your wishes if you are unable to do so yourself.

Why is Advanced Care Planning Important?

Ensures Your Wishes Are Honoured: By documenting your preferences for end-of-life care, you can ensure that your wishes are respected and followed, even if you are unable to communicate them later.

Reduces Family Stress: Advanced care planning can alleviate the burden on your loved ones by providing them with clear guidance on your preferences for care, reducing uncertainty and potential conflict during difficult times.

Promotes Shared Decision-Making: Engaging in advanced care planning encourages open and honest communication with your healthcare providers and loved ones, fostering a collaborative approach to decision-making.

Provides Peace of Mind: Knowing that you have made decisions about your healthcare can provide you and your family with peace of mind, allowing you to focus on making the most of your final days.

Click here to download our Advanced Care Plan to help you think about what matters to you.



To get started with advance care planning, consider the following steps:

Step 1: Think

What are you beliefs, values, and wishes?

Think about what matters most to you in terms of your healthcare and quality of life – what makes your life meaningful?

Consider factors such as your goals for care, any specific treatments you would want or not want, and your religious or spiritual beliefs.

Step 2: Learn

What do you need to know about your health and how much do you want to know, and when?

You might want to think about what your health condition means for you and what it will look like in the future, from symptom management and active treatment through end-of-life to the terminal phase. You might want to look at what possible problems you might face, along with the treatments and therapies that are available to alleviate any symptoms.

Step 3: Decide

Who will you trust to make decisions for you if you are unable to communicate your wishes?

You might want to consider enlisting the support of someone to help you make decisions about your healthcare preferences. Having a trusted individual by your side during these times can be a source of strength and solace.

At present the Isle of Man does not have the legal framework to enable power of attorney to decide on healthcare matters, only financial matters. Decisions around healthcare will be made in your best interest by your medical professional in charge of your care. This is why discussions around your wishes for future care is important to have with those professionals involved in your care, i.e G.P. Hospital consultant.

Step 4: Talk

Start the Conversation

Begin by talking to your loved ones about your wishes for end-of-life care. Discussing these topics openly can help ensure that everyone is on the same page and understands your preferences.

Decide who you want to talk to, when might be a good time to talk to them, and where you will have these conversations. Make a list of the most important things you want to talk about and say during your conversations.

Step 5: Record

Record your plan – write it down or make a video.

Recording your advanced care plan ensures that your preferences for end-of-life care are clearly documented and can be readily accessed by your healthcare providers and loved ones when needed.

Your preferences for end-of-life care may change over time, so it's important to review and update your advance directives or Treatment Escalation Plan (TEP) periodically to ensure they accurately reflect your wishes. While an advance care plan is not a legal contract, it serves as a powerful guide for your loved ones and medical team to honour your preferences for end-of-life care, where possible.

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