Advance care planning (ACP) is a multistep process that involves an ongoing dialogue between individuals and health care providers in which individuals are supported in (1) understanding treatment options for end-of-life care in the context of their own medical conditions; (2) exploring their personal values and beliefs regarding end-of-life care; and (3) sharing their wishes regarding future medical care and treatment with family, surrogates, and physicians. This article offers an overview of ACP and its benefits to individuals and providers. ACP forms, such as advance directives (ADs) and physician orders for life-sustaining treatment (POLST) are defined, compared, and contrasted.
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