New plan for last days of life

By March 4, 2014 Recent News

Stuff 1 March 2014
A controversial national health programme giving patients control over their own death has been criticised as “euthanasia in disguise”, but Jean Whitteker, 91, thinks it is a blessing.
Advance care planning (ACP) is a new concept in New Zealand that grants patients the right to plan their death care, including choosing to decline lifesaving treatment in order to die naturally.
For Whitteker, a plan has given her confirmation that she will “die with dignity – my way”.
Knowing doctors will be legally bound to respect her wishes and not use unwanted treatments to prolong her life has come as a huge comfort.
She watched her mother slowly die from cancer. Her late husband suffered a debilitating stroke and “lived a lot longer than he wanted to”.
“I can’t see the point of being kept alive just to die at some time in the short distance. I would just love to not wake up one morning and that would be it,” she said.