Advance decision

What is an advance decision?

Your advance decision indicates what kind of care you wish to have at the end of your life. You can create an advance decision to prepare for a situation in which you cannot participate in decisions on your care. Reasons for this can include

  • unconsciousness
  • a severe illness
  • an accident
  • dementia.

The patient's advance decision, needs, and wishes guide the planning and implementation of palliative care. An advance decision also helps your loved ones act according to your wishes if they have to make decisions on your behalf. The care personnel has to respect your wishes on care, good life and a dignified death.

In your advance decision, you can specify when to discontinue care that artificially maintains your vital functions or prolong your life for a short while. This binds healthcare professionals. You can also express specific preferences regarding care, such as food, drink, or environmental preferences. The healthcare team strives to follow these wishes whenever possible.

How can I create an advance decision?

You can create an advance decision

  • in the My Kanta Pages
  • in writing confirmed by witnesses
  • orally.

If you have a disease that needs treatment, you should discuss your advance decision with the care personnel. They can foresee the situations that might arise with your disease. This enables you to better align your advance decision with your wishes.

There is no specific format for an advance decision, but it is recommended to create the advance decision in writing and use witnesses.

Below is an example of a form that you can use for expressing your advance decision.

Advance decision (THL)

Lasting power of attorney

A lasting power of attorney enables you to appoint a person to manage your affairs when you cannot manage them yourself. You can specify which affairs the authorised person may manage and how their actions are supervised.

The power of attorney has certain formal requirements. Therefore, it should be created with an expert, such as a lawyer. The authorised person applies for a confirmation of the power of attorney when you are no longer capable of taking care of your affairs. The lasting power of attorney is confirmed by a guardianship authority the Digital and Population Data Service Agency.

More information on the lasting power of attorney: