Advance care planning

Planning for your future health care

Advance care planning is the process of giving information to others about your health care choices in case illness or injury prevents you from telling them yourself.

Talk with members of your care circle about your health care choices. This is a time for you to share:

  • what kind of care and treatment you do or do not want
  • your wishes, goals and values and how they relate to your health care choices for the future

You can put your health care choices in writing by creating a health care directive. Members of your care circle and your health care providers will use this document to interpret and understand your wishes, goals and values for your future health care needs.

Source: Allina Health's Patient Education Department, Knee Replacement, seventh edition, ortho-ah-90140
First Published: 10/01/2000
Last Reviewed: 02/01/2020

How to get started

Allina Health offers three ways to help you get started:

  1. Sign up for a free advance care planning class. Call 612-262-2224 or 1-855-839-0005 to register.
  2. Fill out a free, secure health care directive online. Go to to create an account.
  3. Print out a health care directive at


If you have a health care directive, bring a copy of it with you when you come to the hospital for surgery. It will be a permanent part of your medical record.