Planning your care - Advance statements
If you have a mental illness, you may be worried that you will not be able to make decisions for yourself in future. Some people choose to keep a record of how they would like to be treated. When someone does this, it is called an ‘advance statement’.
- An advance statement is a way for you to say how you would like to be treated in the future if you can’t decide for yourself.
- Advanced statements are sometimes known as “Living Wills”.
- You can use an advance statement to say who you would like to manage your affairs, such as paying bills or looking after children.
- There are different types of advance statements which do different things.
- An advance decision is where you refuse certain types of treatment in the future. This is the only sort of advance statement that is legally binding.
- Doctors should normally follow other advance statements though.
- If you would like to make an advance statement, try to find out if the NHS runs a scheme in your area. You can look on your mental health trust website to find this.
This section covers:
- What are advance statements?
- Advance statements and mental capacity?
- Do doctors have to follow an advance statement?
- Making an advance statement
- What happens if professionals don’t follow my advance statement?
These pages are created by Rethink Mental Illness' Advice and Information Service in accordance with the Information Standard. Last reviewed in February 2016. Next review July 2018.
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