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Can advance care planning (ACP) be a relational healing place for indigenous homeless people in Aotearoa New Zealand?.

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Mortality, , 1-14

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This article presents an autoethnographic study exploring the experience of Advance Care Planning (ACP) from the perspective of a Māori individual experiencing homelessness in Aotearoa New Zealand.

The authors investigate the potential of ACP to facilitate healing and restore familial and communal connections for indigenous people living outside traditional housing situations. The study is grounded in a relational autoethnographic framework, emphasising collaborative storytelling and mutual exchange between the researcher and the participant, a Māori man named Daniel (a pseudonym). The paper highlights the disparities in ACP accessibility and relevance for marginalised populations, particularly the indigenous homeless, against the backdrop of conventional Western health models and domiciled populations. It argues for an extension of ACP to encompass the holistic well-being and cultural customs of Māori people, suggesting that ACP can offer a dignified pathway for indigenous homeless individuals to engage with their end-of-life preferences, including tangihanga (traditional Māori death customs and rituals). Through the narrative of Daniel, the article illustrates the transformative potential of ACP in reconnecting with whānau (extended family), hapū (subtribes), and ancestral lands, thereby addressing the profound dislocation and trauma experienced by many Māori as a result of homelessness. The study calls for a culturally adapted ACP process that is embedded within a network of Māori health professionals and operates within a Māori cultural framework to meet the unique needs of this population.

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