Advance care planning helps you document your healthcare wishes

The start of a new year is a good time to start advance care planning.

Advance care planning is a way to help you think about, talk about, and document your wishes for healthcare. It’s a process that can help you make healthcare decisions now and for the future.

If there’s a time when you aren’t able to speak for yourself, it’s important that your loved ones and your healthcare team understand your wishes for healthcare.

Planning today makes sure that your wishes are known, no matter what the future holds. Advance care planning may bring comfort and peace of mind to you, your family, and to those who may have to make healthcare decisions on your behalf.

• What are your values, wishes, and goals for your healthcare? Think about what’s important to you.

• Do you have beliefs that influence your healthcare wishes?

• Are there conditions under which you do or don’t want a certain treatment?

• Where would you want to be cared for?

• Have you had experiences with family or friends where healthcare decisions had to be made?

• Have you considered Organ and Tissue donation? Consider getting—and filling out—a Green Sleeve.

A Green Sleeve is a plastic pocket that holds your advance care planning forms. Think of it like a medical passport. It holds important legal forms that go with you through the healthcare system.

In an emergency, Alberta Health Services medical providers can look at your Green Sleeve and know your healthcare wishes. The Green Sleeve belongs to you and should only have the most up-to-date forms inside.

You can get a Green Sleeve from any Alberta Health Services provider. You can ask your family doctor for one or a nurse might suggest that you get one. You can also order up to four free online. Email conversationsmatter@ahs.ca for information.

-Submitted by Alberta Health Services

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