New medical decision making laws webinar

Thursday 16 February, 2017

New Medical Decision Making LawsThe new Medical Treatment Planning and Decisions Act 2016 makes some significant changes to advance care planning and medical treatment decision making for Victorians. On Tuesday 28 February, the McCabe Centre for Law and Cancer and Cancer Council Victoria are hosting a free webinar for health professionals outlining key changes and what this means for clinicians in practice.

On 24 November 2016 the Victorian Parliament passed the Medical Treatment Planning and Decisions Act 2016. The new law makes some significant changes to medical treatment decision making for Victorians such as:

  • The introduction of binding ‘instructional directives', to allow people to consent to medical treatment they would want or refuse medical treatment that they would not want, should they lose the ability to make or communicate their own decisions;
  • The introduction of ‘values directives', to allow people to express preferences, wishes and values to guide future medical treatment decisions made for them;
  • Changing the basis for decisions that are made for people who cannot communicate or make their own decisions, from primary consideration of the person's best interests, to primary consideration of the person's own preferences, wishes and values.

Register for the webinar

The webinar will provide an overview of the Act, and key provisions relating to advance care directives (instructional and values directives) and substitute decision-making. Speakers include Dr Barbara Hayes, Northern Health Advance Care Planning Program Clinical Lead, and McCabe Centre senior legal policy advisor Sondra Davoren and legal policy advisor Dr Deborah Lawson.

Research: Patients and families needed for study into law at end of life

Cancer Council Victoria is partnering with the Australian Centre for Health Law Research (QUT), the University of Queensland and Cancer Councils NSW and Queensland to explore how people understand and act upon their legal right to participate in decisions about end of life care for themselves or for their loved ones.

We're looking for people with terminal cancer and family members of people with terminal cancer aged 18 and above who are involved in medical decision-making to complete an interview at a time and location convenient to them. We would be grateful if you would print and display a copy of the poster in your health service, clinic or waiting room, as appropriate.
Download poster (PDF, 0.6mb)

To find out more visit

This research has been approved by Cancer Council Victoria's Human Research Ethics Committee, the QUT University Human Research Ethics Committee, and the University of Queensland Behavioural and Social Sciences Ethical Review Committee. Please note that our ethics approval permits recruitment via participant response to newsletters, media, posters and other general means only; potential participants who might meet the eligibility criteria cannot be approached directly and asked to participate. 


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