Advance Care Planning

Make your wishes count – plan ahead for your healthcare needs and make your Advance Care Plan today.

What is Advance Care Planning?

Advance Care Planning is for everyone. It is a way to let your family and doctors know how you want to be cared for if you become unable to make decisions for yourself.

It is about planning for a time when you may be very sick or frail to make decisions about your care.

Why do I need an Advance Care Plan?

If you are sick or injured and cannot make your own decisions about treatment, your family may be asked to make decisions about your care, such as:

  • resuscitation and life support
  • high risk surgery
  • permanent tube feeding
  • hospital or nursing home admissions

Having an Advance Care Plan allows you to make these decisions ahead of time and discuss and write down your wishes.

Who can use the service?

This service is suitable for people who:

  • Are aged 18 years or over who require assistance/support with advanced care planning
  • Have a GP/Medical Specialist or be willing to visit a GP
  • Have the capacity to make their own health care decisions

When should I start Advance Care Planning?

It’s never too early to start thinking about your Advance Care Plan. It is a good idea to plan when you are well and your health is stable. This gives you enough time to think clearly and talk about your preferences with your family and doctor.

We recommended that you begin to plan while:

  • your health is stable
  • you don’t feel under stress or pressure
  • there is plenty of time to make well considered choices and to involve others such as your spiritual advisor, doctor, family or friends.

How do I make an Advance Care Plan?

Let us help

Our free Advance Care Planning service can help you prepare your Advance Care Plan to provide a clear process for talking about and documenting preferences for your future health care. The Advance Care Planning team can provide face to face consultation to help you consider your preferences and help you complete your documents correctly.

There are some simple steps you can take:

  1. Talk about your views and preferences with your doctor, family, carers and close friends.
  2. Appoint a Medical Treatment Decision Maker who can make health care decisions on your behalf if needed. You can also choose to appoint a support person who has access to your medical information to help you make decisions about your care.
  3. Write down your views and preferences for your family and doctors in a document called an ‘Advance Care Directive’
  4. Give copies of your Advance Care Directive to your family, doctor and hospital staff on admission.

Benefits of Advance Care Planning

  • Helps doctors and others who care for you know what you want
  • Peace of mind of knowing your wishes will be respected
  • Makes things easier for your family.

Advance Care Planning helps to:

  • Raise the topic about your future care preferences with family members who often wonder about such things but avoid raising discussion for fear of worrying loved ones
  • Provide peace of mind that your wishes regarding future care and medical treatment will be respected by the doctors, nurses and others who may be looking after you
  • Unburden your family of the stress and conflict that can happen  while making decisions for a seriously ill loved one when there is uncertainty about their wishes
  • Make your wishes and preferences clearly known so that these can be respected.

How will health providers know I have an Advance Care Plan?

You can provide a copy of your Advance Care Plan to your GP, Specialist doctor and local public hospital through their Advance Care Planning program.

You can also upload a copy to your national My Health Record – the Australian Government system for personal health information. This will allow healthcare providers like doctors, specialists and hospital staff with access to the My Health Record system to see your Advanced Care Plan. 

Dr Fergus McGee from Peninsula Health’s Advance Care Planning Service explains what the changes mean when it comes to making end of life care decisions. Make your wishes count by making an Advance Care Plan. 

Let us come to you

Would you like the Advance Care Planning team to talk to your community about Advance Care Planning? Would you like our team to support your community in small group workshops to complete you Advance Care Planning documents? The Advance Care Planning service now offers group presentations & group workshops. Please contact to arrange. 



Advance Care Planning Service
Phone ACCESS: 1300 665 781