You may wish to make an Advance Decision if you have strong feelings about a particular situation that could arise in the future or particular types of treatment for instance you may want to refuse a blood transfusion or an amputation.

More commonly, you may have been told that you have a degenerative, terminal or mental illness. Making an Advance Decision may give you peace of mind knowing that your wishes should not be ignored if you are unable to take part in the decision-making process at the relevant time.

You do not have to make an Advance Decision. You may decide to leave it to the healthcare professionals providing your treatment to decide what is in your best interests. When deciding this, they should take into account any evidence they have of your past wishes, your beliefs and values. They should consult family, friends and carers where appropriate. They may decide that what is in your best interests is not the same as what you would have decided to do yourself.

View of the sea from Summerleaze beach in Bude, Cornwall