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March 2014

New plan for last days of life

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Stuff co.nz 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.
http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/health/9777926/New-plan-for-last-days-of-life