Advance Care Planning (ACP) is a process for patients and their families to discuss:

  • their wishes and goals related to treatment and end-of-life care,
  • clarify related values and goals,
  • and state preferences through written documents and medical orders.

The ACP process can begin at any time and can be revisited periodically, but becomes more focused as health status changes. In situations where a patient’s decision-making capacity is limited, healthcare providers turn to loved ones to make decisions.

When there have been no ACP conversations between the patient and loved ones, loved ones are left to make decisions regarding life-sustaining treatment without input from the patient or with little knowledge of the patient’s wishes.

ACP Resources

There are many online resources available to assist with ACP. Below are links to several resources that can help nurses plan.

Primary Resources
Additional Resources