A new resource about Advance Care Planning for End of Life for People with Mental Illness is now available. The guide was developed by the NSW Ministry of Health with input from mental health consumers. BEING would like to thank all those involved in providing feedback.
This resource explains what Advance Care Planning for End of Life care is and what the process involves. A key message is that Advance Care Planning is important for everyone, and it is best to start the planning process early, rather than waiting till the person becomes unwell.
Advance Care Planning for End of Life involves talking about your values and concerns, and the treatment you would want to receive in end of life care, in case you became unable to say what you wanted.
For people with a mental illness, stigma and discrimination has been and still is a concern in the Advance Care Planning process. For example, it is still commonly assumed that a person with mental illness does not have the capacity to have important conversations or make decisions about their end of life care. This goes against the right we all have to be presumed to have capacity unless it has been found otherwise.
People with a lived experience of mental illness have the same rights as all health consumers and should have their end of life wishes respected. This guide is a valuable resource which is based on this principle. The guide addresses the false assumptions which can affect people with mental illness in Advance Care Planning and provides guidance on best practice.
The Introductory Guide is for everyone and is available in 11 different languages. To read the Introductory Guide click here.
A Comprehensive Guide was developed for health care professionals and can be found here.