Our program of work

Our projects and programs

Advance Care Planning Australia (ACPA) is a national program funded by the Australian Government Department of Health, enabling Australians to make the best choices for their life and health care. Find out more about Advance Care Planning Australia >

ACPA delivers on a range of initiatives in collaboration with other leading organisations including:

Advance Care Planning Australia Learning is a national eLearning hub to support aged care workers, health professionals and consumers learn more about advance care planning. There are a range of modules addressing advance care planning introductions, conversations, legal implications and more. This educational program is led by Advance Care Planning Australia and is funded by the Australian Government.

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The advance care planning national curriculum project involves the development of curriculum resources and tools for Australian universities. The project has included an evidence-based literature review, establishment of a partnership with the Queensland University of Technology, a palliative care curriculum for undergraduates (PCC4U), a national university survey; national consultation, implementation and evaluation. This project is led by Advance Care Planning Australia and is funded by the Australian Government.

ACPA advisory services (including phone, email and online) ensure information and resources are provided to address direct enquiries.

The Advance Care Planning Community Volunteers project is designed to train and mentor volunteers to deliver a community advance care planning education program and staff the national advisory service.

The project has delivered on a nationally applicable advance care planning volunteer position description, volunteer training program, data collection tools, evaluation, operating procedures. This project is led by Advance Care Planning Australia and is funded by the Australian Government.

An advance care planning conference was held in 2014, 2015 and 2016. The conference was designed to bring together leading advanced care planning experts, researchers, program staff, policy makers and consumers to hear up-to-date scientific information and share learnings. This project is led by Advance Care Planning Australia and is funded by the Australian Government. 

Decision Assist logoDecision Assist was funded as part of the Australian Government’s Living Longer, Living Better aged care reform package. It provided specialist palliative care and advance care planning advice and resources to aged care providers and general practitioners caring for recipients of aged care services.

Advance Care Planning Australia and Decision Assist worked hand-in-hand, delivering resources for advance care planning, with Decision Assist focused on aged care and general practice, while Advance Care Planning Australia has a broader health professional focus.

Decision Assist Summary Report

The Decision Assist Summary Report is now available. It summaries the program’s impact from 2013-2017, providing an overview of the program initiatives, findings and policy implications. Decision Assist was delivered by a consortium of leading palliative care and advance care planning organisations. Read report >

Start talking is an education program developed by Advance Care Planning Australia in partnership with Dementia Australia (previously Alzheimer’s Australia).

The education program includes advance care planning and dementia resources – eLearning modules, facilitator education program and manual, participant education program and manual, mentoring support and evaluation. This project is led by Advance Care Planning Australia and is funded by the Australian Government.

This national collaborative qualitative study involves the thematic synthesis of qualitative studies of patient and caregiver perspectives on advance care planning and end-of-life care in dementia. It will help to inform resources required for these groups. This project is led by Advance Care Planning Australia and is funded by the Australian Government.

Knowing What Matters: ACP for CALD communities is a qualitative study that engaged with national consumers and health professionals to understand beliefs and information requirements to promote successful advance care planning. The project has produced bi-lingual advance care planning resources in 12 languages. This project is led by Advance Care Planning Australia and is funded by the Australian Government.

This project involves a national review of legislation relating to advance care planning, end of life care, mental health, and aged care. The project will produce a technical report summarising the fundamentals of advance care planning and the law of each jurisdiction and the development of a suite of national resources for a variety of audiences.

This project is led by Advance Care Planning Australia in collaboration with Decision Assist and DLA Piper, and is funded by the Australian Government.

The National Advance Care Directive Prevalence Study is designed to capture the proportion of individuals with advance care planning documents in the setting of residential aged care homes, hospitals, and general practice.

The 2017 project was a collaboration between Advance Care Planning Australia and Monash University. It involved national investigators and is funded by the Australian Government. Results of the Data Analysis of the 2017 project have been released.

Data collection for the 2018 National Advance Care Directive Prevalence Study is now completed. We are currently analysing the data and the results will be disseminated through government reports and peer-reviewed publications.

During 2014-18, ACPA delivered a program to support advance care planning implementation in Victoria.

The purpose of this program was to provide advance care planning leadership and work in partnership with health services and the Victorian Department of Health and Human Services to develop and deliver a range of initiatives relating to leadership, governance, engagement, scoping and evaluation, accessibility and transferability, education and mentoring, and resources to support implementation. The projects delivered are outlined in the table.

TABLE Victorian Advance care planning implementation 121018 no links

The Australian Digital Health Agency is partnering with the Department of Health, Western Australia to establish and lead the National Goals of Care Collaborative to deliver the Advance Care Planning and Goals of Care (GoC) My Health Record Project. Advance Care Planning Australia has welcomed the opportunity to be involved in this important national initiative.  

The overall aim of the project is to enhance consumer choice in relation to documenting ACP discussions and ensuring relevant ACP documents are accessible to health care professionals when required. It will involve evaluation of current utilisation, guideline development, education and promotion of MHR for health care providers, and consider state based requirements. It aims to achieve increased meaningful use of ACP and GoC documents within MHR, for consumers and health professionals.

Website resources

More related projects and programs

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    Advance project


    Advance is a free toolkit of screening and assessment tools and a training package, designed to support nurses in Australian general practices to initiate advance care planning (ACP) and palliative care in everyday general practice.
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    CareSearch website


    The CareSearch website provides trustworthy information about palliative care and advance care planning for patients, carers and families as well as for the health professionals providing their care.
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    ELDAC provides information, guidance, and resources to health professionals and aged care workers to support palliative care and advance care planning to improve the care of older Australians.
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    Dying to Talk website

    Palliative Care Australia

    Dying to Talk encourages Australians of all ages and levels of health to talk about dying. Having a conversation with your loved ones about your end-of-life wishes will help them to make decisions on your behalf should you be unable to communicate your wishes.
  • Website

    MyValues website

    Barwon Health

    MyValues is an online resource to help people identify, consider and communicate their preferences about the health and personal care they would want in the later stages of life. The website provides advance care planning information and allows for development of a MyValues Report.
  • Website

    Talking End of Life

    Too often death is a taboo in our society. People avoid talking about or planning for it. This taboo is even more obvious with regards to people with intellectual disability. Talking End of Life is designed for disability support workers but is also helpful for families, health professionals, educators and those who teach people with intellectual disability about end of life.
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    End of Life Law in Australia

    Queensland University of Technology

    Provides accurate, practical and relevant information for patients, families, health and legal practitioners, the media, policymakers and the broader community about Australian laws relating to death, dying and end of life decision-making.
  • Video

    Decision Assist Linkages project overview

    Decision Assist

    A selection of videos available on the Decision Assist YouTube channel, providing an overview of the Linkages project, as well as a closer look at some of the outcomes and individual providers involved.
  • Articles & Publications

    Linkages project case studies

    Decision Assist

    This booklet provides a snapshot of these 20 demonstration sites – their goals, achievements, challenges, and plans for the future – as they undertook their Linkages project.
  • Articles & Publications

    Promoting Service Linkages in Palliative and Aged Care

    Decision Assist

    This guidance document provides information and resources to support improved linkages between specialist palliative care services, general practitioners, and services in receipt of Commonwealth home care or residential aged care funding.
  • Articles & Publications

    Palliative and Aged Care Linkages Manual

    Decision Assist

    This manual provides detailed guidance and resources to implement one or more of seven Linkage strategies designed to strengthen partnerships between aged care providers and palliative care services.