Advance care planning information for professionals
Everyone has the right to make their own medical treatment decisions. However, anyone can experience an injury or illness that means they are unable to make decisions, either temporarily or permanently.
If this happens to you, Victoria’s Medical Treatment Planning and Decisions Act 2016 specifies who has legal authority to make medical treatment decisions for you. This person is called your medical treatment decision maker.
To work out who your medical treatment decision maker is, see Identifying the medical treatment decision maker.
Choosing a medical treatment decision maker
You can choose your medical treatment decision maker by appointing someone to this role, providing you have decision-making capacity to make the appointment.
Whoever you choose should be someone you trust to respect your values and preferences.
You can appoint more than one person, but only one person acts at any one time.
You can download the appointment form, from the Health Vic website
If you want to appoint more than two medical treatment decision makers, use the long version.
The OPA booklet Take Control includes the checklist and short version of the form.
You need to sign the form in front of two witnesses.
One must be:
- a registered medical practitioner (medical doctor)
- authorised to witness affidavits.
The Department of Justice & Community Safety website has a full list of people who can witness affidavits.
Neither witness can be a person who is being appointed in the document.
If you cannot physically sign the form, use the form Appointment of medical treatment decision maker for someone signing on your behalf
Ending and cancelling
The appointment of your medical treatment decision maker ends if:
- you revoke (cancel) the appointment (while you have capacity to do so)
- the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT) revokes the power
- you die.
Download the form Revocation of medical treatment decision maker
You should inform your medical treatment decision maker that their appointment has been revoked. You should also inform people who know of the appointment, such as your doctor or hospital.
If you resign as a medical treatment decision maker, you must must take all reasonable steps to inform the following people that you resign as medical treatment decision maker:
- the person who appointed you
- any other appointed medical treatment decision maker who was appointed at the same time as you.
Your resignation must be:
- in writing and expressly state an intention to resign
- signed and dated by the appointee
- witnessed by one adult witness.
Download the form Resignation of medical treatment decision maker