4 Important Steps of Advance Care Planning:
Step 1. Think about and decide about the kind of care you would want.
Advanced care planning takes time but it is a good idea, no matter your age or how healthy you are today. Talking with your family about what you would want and why will help them feel ready if a health crisis happens. Here are some ideas to get you thinking:
- what kind of treatment you do or don’t want in the case of serious illness or injury
- what makes life meaningful to you or gives you pleasure – what would you want to still be able to do if you are ill
- where would you want to receive care (for example; home, hospital, hospice, other)
Here is a link to questions that you and your loved ones can talk about.
Step 2. Choose a healthcare agent
Your healthcare agent is the person(s) who would make healthcare choices for you if you were not able to make choices. Choosing someone who wants to be your health care agent is important. Click on healthcare agent to learn more about the role of a healthcare agent.
Step 3. Write down your choices about healthcare and the name of your healthcare agent.
Once you find a healthcare agent and decide about the care you would like, write your choices on a form called an advance directive. Maine’s advance directive form helps to make sure that your healthcare agent, loved ones, and your doctor(s) all understand your wishes.
Step 4. Share copies of your advance directive with your loved ones, healthcare agent, your doctor, and your local hospitals.