Plan for your future health care decisions

Under our Care Consent Act there are many ways to plan for your future health care decisions.

Choose the care you want

You can choose the care you want when you can no longer make the decision for yourself. You can decide whether to get life-saving treatments or not.

  1. Tell your family and friends your wishes.
  2. Complete our resuscitation and care form.
  3. Give your doctor a copy.
  4. Bring a copy with you to the hospital.

Choose someone to make your care decisions

You can choose someone you trust to make your care decisions if you cannot make them yourself. This is called an advance directive; in other places, these are sometimes called “living wills”. This planning can help stop family disputes about the care you should receive.

To make an advance directive, you must be:

  • mentally capable; and
  • at least 16 years old.

The person you appoint to make decisions for you is called a "proxy". You can also write down your wishes for future health care and personal care in a directive.

Who can be your proxy?

Your proxy should be someone you trust to carry out your wishes if you are not able to express them yourself.

What kind of decisions can a proxy make?

  • Health care decisions
  • Personal care decisions

Who can make financial decisions for you?

A proxy cannot make financial decisions for you. To appoint someone to make financial decisions you must visit a lawyer to prepare an enduring power of attorney.

Who can make a directive?

You must be at least 16 years of age and capable of understanding the nature and effect of your directive when you sign it. That means that you understand what you've written and the consequences of your choices.

How to make your directive?

Generally speaking, you do not need a lawyer to fill out an advance directive unless you want to give your proxy special authority.

What if you do not have a directive?

If you become incapable of making a health care decision and you do not have a directive, your next of kin will be asked to make that decision for you. This may not be the person who you would have chosen to be your proxy.

Does your proxy have to follow your wishes?

Your proxy must follow your wishes unless they're impossible to carry out, or your proxy believes that because of changes in knowledge, technology or practice, you would no longer act on the wish.

The most current wishes you made (verbal or written) while you were still capable must be followed. If your proxy does not know your wishes, they must make a decision based on your values and beliefs. If they do not know your values and beliefs, they must make a decision based on what's in your best interests.

Health care providers must also follow any wishes you make to refuse treatment. For example, if you tell your health care provider that you do not want life support, they must follow your wish.

How to appoint a proxy

  1. Download and complete this form.
  2. Keep the original at home in a special place and tell people where it is.
  3. Make a note of where your directive is and stick it on the outside of your refrigerator.
  4. Give a copy to your proxy.
  5. Give copies to other trusted family members and friends.
  6. Give a copy to your physician and other people who may be providing care to you.
  7. Take a copy to Whitehorse General Hospital or your local health centre.
  8. Notify Yukon Health Care Insurance in writing that you've a directive. Download and complete a notification card or pick up the card at their office.
    In person: 4th Floor, 204 Lambert Street
    Government of Yukon
    Insured Health Services (H-2)
    Box 2703, Whitehorse, Yukon Y1A 2C6
  9. List the people to whom you've given copies of your directive and keep this list with your directive.

If you completed attachment B of the advanced directive form

Your lawyer must complete this form to make a directive under the Care Consent Act.

What to do once you complete your directive?

  1. Signed your directive in the presence of 2 witnesses.
  2. Your proxy must also sign it.
  3. Make sure that the people who need to know about your wishes get a copy of your directive.

Download our brochure or booklet about advance directives.


If you have questions, phone 867-456-3946, toll-free in Yukon 1-800-661-0408, extension 3946.