Resuscitation or Do Not Attempt Resuscitation is a decision about whether to attempt to restart the heart if it stops.
The All Wales DNACPR policy suggests open discussion about this difficult topic, and doctors will seek to obtain the views of patients and those close to them.
Doctors might make a DNACPR decision if someone is approaching the end of their life and cardiopulmonary resuscitation would deny them a peaceful, natural death or they might want to avoid the trauma of rushing them to hospital if they know the person wanted to spend their last days at home.
CPR is an incredibly invasive procedure and in patients with secondary cancer is unsuccessful 98.1% of the time. You can read more about this in this Guardian article.
For people living with a terminal illness, this is sometimes seen as prolonging the dying event in a painful and undignified way.
What is most important to note is that many patients who opt for having a DNACPR form to express their decision not to have this treatment, still receive blood transfusions, radiotherapy, chemotherapy, antibiotics, surgery and many other interventions that may help them feel better or slow the disease. This means that having a DNACPR form is merely a decision about opting out of one of many treatments, with the others still being available as indicated.