Talking about death and dying
Generally speaking, Western society does not talk much about death and dying. It is mostly considered taboo yet all who have experienced the death of a loved one will tell you that it is very important to discuss end of life wishes. It is often captured under the term "Advance Care Planning".
What is Advance Care Planning?
Advance care planning involves thinking about, discussing with your family and close friends, and possibly documenting what types of health care you may or may not wish to receive should you become seriously ill and/or unable to speak for yourself. While it is top of mind once illness or accident strikes, this is actually something everyone needs to think about so that it is in place when the unforeseen happens.
Tools that are used in advance care planning can include:
- Advance Care Plan
- Advance Care Directive
- Living Will
- Medical Power of Attorney
- Enduring Power of Attorney
- Enduring Power of Guardianship
- Will or testament
You may need legal assistance to put together some of these documents.
Please select your state from the list to find out more about which laws apply and which tools are recognised.
If you just want to start creating your plan, follow this link:https://www.advancecareplanning.org.au/create-your-plan
The following links are more for practioners:
- Australian Capital Territory
- New South Wales
- Northern Territory
- South Australia
- Western Australia
Organisations that can provide you with more information and tools to get the discussion going:
- Advance Life Care
- Advance Care Planning Australia - 1300 208 582
- End-of-Life Doulas
- Dying to Talk
- My Values - aimed at Victoria, to record end of life treatment wishes
- QUT End of Life Law in Australia
- The Groundswell Project