Posted on 09 Mar 2018
From 12 March 2018, new laws on medical treatment decisions will be introduced which expands VCAT’s role.
The Medical Treatment Planning and Decisions Act 2016 seeks to put people’s preferences and values at the centre of medical treatment decision making. The new laws give people more control about the medical treatment they want to receive at a future time when they are unable to make those decisions for themselves, for example due to illness or disability.
Victorians can now make an advance care directive containing their instructions and values about future medical treatment, appoint someone to make medical decisions on their behalf, and appoint a support person to help them make decisions for themselves.
If there is dispute or uncertainty, people can come to VCAT for a decision or advice on behalf of the person needing treatment. There is no cost to apply.
Decisions VCAT can make
VCAT can make decisions about:
- medical treatment decisions
- whether a person needing treatment has decision making capacity
- advance care directives
- medical treatment decision makers
- support persons
- medical research procedures.
Who can apply?
Family members, friends, health practitioners, medical treatment decision makers, or anyone else with an interest in the person needing treatment can apply to VCAT for a decision.
Health practitioners and medical treatment decision makers can also come to VCAT for advice about medical treatment or an advance care directive.