Advanced Care Planning

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.

Advance Statement

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. Find out more about Advanced statements on the NHS website 

Advance Decision

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. Find out more about Advanced Decisions on the NHS website

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).  Go to our 'Managing Someone Else’s Affairs' page.

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. Download a copy of planning for your future care from the NHS website (PDF, 292kb) 

ReSPECT document

ReSPECT stands for “Recommended Summary Plan for Emergency Care and Treatment”. It is the process of creating personalised recommendations for a person’s clinical care in emergency situations (including cardiorespiratory arrest) in which they are not able to decide for themselves or express their wishes. The process of creating a ReSPECT form involves a conversation which:

  1. Develops a shared understanding of a person’s health condition, circumstances and future outlook
  2. Then explores that person’s preferences for their care and realistic treatment in the event of a future emergency
  3. Then goes on to make and record agreed clinical recommendations for their care and treatment in a future emergency in which they cannot make or express decisions at the time

Who is the ReSPECT process for?

This process can be for anyone, but is especially relevant for people:

  • With particular health needs that may involve a sudden deterioration in their health
  • With a life limiting condition, such as advanced organ failure, advanced cancer, or frailty
  • At risk of sudden events, such as epilepsy or diabetic crisis
  • At foreseeable risk of death or sudden cardiorespiratory arrest 
  • Who want to complete the ReSPECT process and documentation for other reasons

Why has the ReSPECT process been created?

ReSPECT aims to encourage patient and family involvement in decision-making, to consider recommendations about CPR in advance for emergency care and treatment, and to record the resulting recommendations on a form that will be used by health care professionals. ReSPECT forms are now being used across Doncaster and will replace the use of DNACPR forms. Ask your GP for more information if you would like to discuss the option of having a ReSPECT form further.

For more information please visit the ReSPECT website.