ADVANCE STATEMENTS

Your chance to say how you want to be treated
What does an Advance Statement cover?

An Advance Statement can cover any aspect of your future health care and treatment. For example, this could include:

– what medication or treatment works well for you
– what treatment(s) you do not want (e.g. medication that has caused unhelpful side effects in the past)
– where you’d like to receive treatment (e.g. in the community or in hospital)

Some examples of what people have said in Advance Statements:

“I prefer individual therapy to group therapy because I’m uncomfortable with strangers when I’m unwell”
“I don’t want medications which make me put on lots of weight”

Who completes an Advance Statement?

You can write an Advance Statement yourself, as long as you have the capacity to do so. You can write it with support from relatives, carers or health and social care professionals. An independent advocacy worker can also support you to create an Advance Statement.

Is an Advance Statement legally binding?

No, it’s not but anyone who makes decisions about your care and treatment must take it into account.

How does an Advance Statement help?

An Advance Statement lets everyone involved in your care know your likes and dislikes if, at any point in the future, you experience difficulty in expressing your views.

Does it need to be signed and witnessed?

Yes, you must sign your Advance Statement to confirm that it contains your wishes. The person witnessing your Advance Statement must also confirm that – in their view – you are fully able to understand what you’ve written and the effect it might have on your treatment. You can ask your GP, CPN, Social Worker or other social care professional to witness your statement.

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