A Substitute Decision-Maker (SDM) is a person who will make health and personal care decisions for you. An SDM will only make decisions for you if you are found mentally incapable of making them for yourself. This guide will help you understand the process of identifying or naming an SDM.

This guide is intended for caregivers of a person whose health has been severely affected by Alzheimer’s disease or by another type of degenerative disease of the brain, such as Parkinson’s disease, the effects of multiple strokes, or even certain forms of multiple sclerosis.

This guide is intended to outline the information necessary for a health care provider to conduct or facilitate an Advance Care Planning (ACP) conversation with a person and their Substitute Decision Maker. This guide is not intended to be a patient education resource. This guide will provide a brief overview of ACP, introduce a template to guide the conversation and outline a process for integrating ACP conversations into practice.

This document serves as a guide for having Advance Care Planning conversations and to record wishes, values and beliefs. It is NOT consent for treatment. It will be viewed as a representation of a person’s capable thoughts and reflections therefore please use their own words.

This screening guideline is intended for Ontario agencies and institutions to evaluate the products they use and distribute related to Advance Care Planning and Health Care Consent.

This document is intended as an informative guide to performing a leadership role in the health care system in Ontario regarding the topics of Health Care Consent and Advance Care Planning.  

This is an executive summary that  focuses on the interrelationship between health care consent and advance care planning under Ontario law, and on related misconceptions of health practitioners and health care organizations.  At common law and under Ontario legislation, informed consent is required before a health practitioner can provide treatment to a patient. Importantly, where a patient is found incapable, the requirement to obtain informed consent is not abrogated, but instead the informed consent is obtained from communications with substitute decision makers (SDMs).

This template is developed for institutions to assist in creating or updating their Health Care Consent (HCC) and Advance Care Planning  (ACP) Policy. It provides important information to consider.

This tip sheet reviews the requirements for informed consent and the hierachy of Substitute Decision Makers (SDM) listed in the Health Care Consent Act (Ontario).  Requirements of SDM as per the HCCA s.20 are outlined.