Monday 18th May 2020

In the last few days, we have seen discussions amongst valve disease patients online regarding hospitals use of Anticipatory Care Planning. In these discussions, there has been some concern about hospitals including Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) orders within a valve disease patients ACP.

We must stress, this would not happen for valve disease alone. Anticipatory care planning (ACP) helps patients make informed choices about how and where to be treated and supported in the future. It requires health and care practitioners to work with people and their carers to ensure the right thing is done at the right time by the right person to achieve the best outcome.

We asked GP, Dr Chris Arden, for comment. He said “Decisions with regards to potential resuscitation, and DNRs in particular, are not generally for single conditions (including valve disease) in isolation, but in the context of an individual's overall health and prognosis. The ACPs are simply a means of clarifying the patient's (or their relative’s) wishes. They can most certainly opt for full resuscitation and life-prolonging treatment, etc.. It is entirely the individual’s choice.”

Patients should not be concerned a DNR could be put on an ACP without the knowledge and consent of the patient and/or family.

If you have any questions regarding this, please email, and we will seek to get them answered.