Although it is scary to think about, we all come to the end of our lives. Obviously it would be best if that happened quickly at the end of a long and healthy life but sometimes, all too often, death and dying comes over a prolonged period.
That raises the question of treatment while you are ill. Can you legally make plans in advance of such illness setting out what you want to be done if you are not well enough to tell the doctors?
In most of Canada you can prepare something called a power of attorney for personal care or a personal directive; these documents are often called "living wills". Such a document can set out in detail the directions you want doctors to follow should you be too sick to tell them yourself. A power of attorney for personal care or personal directive also says who the doctors should ask for treatment authority if you are unable to give direction. Nunavut does not have legislation allowing for powers of attorney for personal care or personal directives (NWT does so it's not clear why we don't) - but that does not mean you cannot make provision for a future illness.
The Courts step in to fill gaps where there is no legislation.
Judges have ruled that every competent adult has the right to be free from unwanted medical treatment. That means that if you clearly set out your wishes in anticipation of circumstances where you may be unable to say what you want a doctor is not free to disregard such advance instructions, even in an emergency.
Since we do not have legislation setting out the way to make your wishes known we have to improvise. It's not ideal but if you write down what you want, sign and have the paper witnessed and dated by two people you have probably done the best you can. It's important to let your family know your wishes and, if you can, to tell the health centre in your community also about your wishes.