LIFE HAPPENS – BE READY!
Welcome! So glad you’ve stopped by.
You’re probably wondering that this page is about, am I right?
Well, it’s about advance care planning (ACP). Sounds very technical but don’t worry –we’ll keep things light and to the point.
Scroll below to find out more, or start by testing your ACP knowledge by taking our fun quiz.
In a nutshell, advance care planning is the process of thinking about what matters most to you and planning for your health and personal care if you ever get sick or injured and can’t speak for yourself. Scary thought, I know. But oh so important!
An advance care plan is the place you choose to record or document that info. Some use guides, others write poems or make recordings. Some don’t document anything. What matters most is that you talk to people about this stuff. This isn’t a top-secret mission and most of us are not mind readers.
Say you’ve been diagnosed with a life-threatening illness or serious injury that progresses rapidly and you can’t communicate.
And maybe you’ve let it be known in advance that you want to spend your final days at home surrounded by family. Advance care planning helps make that possible!
The name sounds like a big deal, and it kind of is. But they’re simply the person that makes decisions on your behalf when you can’t. This can be anyone in your inner circle (family, friend, neighbour, caregiver) with whom you trust to make decisions for you. Depending on where you live, your SDM will be called something different. If you want to find out more about ACP legalese in your area, check out our free handy-dandy guide Living Well, Planning Well: An Advance Care Planning Resource for Accessing Your Rights.
You could be thinking I’m young and healthy. Why do I need to do advance care planning? Well, here’s the thing. Life happens, no matter what you might have planned. Anything can happen at any time.
You plan for your financial future (those things called RRSPs are apparently good) and set up a will in case of an emergency. It just makes sense to plan for your future health and personal care!
Advance care planning also provides those in your inner circle with incredible peace of mind because they’ll be more confident making decisions on your behalf.
The flipside? We’ve heard firsthand from healthcare workers about the stresses of NOT doing advance care planning and the conflicts and stress it places on families and caregivers. Not a pretty picture!
We’ve covered the basics of advance care planning but it’s so worth learning more! Here’s some things you can do to get started.
- Watch the video below and start thinking about the 5-step process of advance care planning.
- Have conversations with those closest to you. This can be the hardest part, but it’s well worth it. You could bribe your family and friends with an awesome array of food and drink at your place, or simply invite them for a coffee. The point is to start talking to them NOW about your values and what’s important to you. You can use these tips as a starting point.
- If you’re really keen (and we know you are), you can start filling out your ACP workbook today.
Click below to find out what organizations across the country are doing to celebrate ACD Day in Canada!
ACP Day 2022 Campaign Materials
Here’s some tools and resources to help our provincial partners and organizations plan for ACP Day.