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21st March 2024

Advance Care Planning Week from 18 to 24 March offers the opportunity to dispel some of the myths about planning for your future health and lifestyle.

Here are five of the most common myths:

Myth 1 – It’s just for old people

We tend to live our lives as if we’re invincible. However, any of us could suddenly experience a life-changing event like a car accident, stroke, or serious illness. In fact, a third of Australians will die before the age of 75. Just as you would plan for other major life events like retirement, it’s worth planning your care in advance so you and your loved ones are well prepared, no matter what the future brings.

Myth 2It’s morbid

We all need to accept our own ageing process and the inevitability of our death as a natural part of life. Advance care planning isn’t morbid, nor is it about hastening death. Instead, conversations about advance care planning should be considered an important part of healthy ageing, and a key aspect in retaining quality of life.

Myth 3  – It’s just about dying

It may come as a surprise but writing an advance care plan is one of the most life-affirming things you can do. Advance care planning is less about dying and more a powerful statement about who we are, how we want live and what we value most about living. It’s also one of the most important gifts we can offer our family and loved ones who would otherwise be left to make difficult decisions should we become too sick to communicate for ourselves.

Myth 4It requires a solicitor

While you can develop an advance care plan with the assistance of a solicitor, it’s not a legal requirement. You will however need to have the legal forms signed by a witness (e.g. a doctor), who can help you develop a plan that is clear, coherent and aligns with your values. You can also contact our Advance Care Planning Support Service for assistance with your planning.

Myth 5It’s too hard

While advance care planning requires some thought and discussion about your values and preferences, it’s not as difficult as you might think. These conversations with loved ones are really valuable. If you choose to document your preferences as well, visit our site below for advice and assistance.

For more information on Advance Care Planning, our ACP Support Service and our ACP workshops, visit