Substituting Our Judgment
Capron, Alexander Morgan
Hastings Center Report. 1992 Mar-Apr; 22(2): 58-59.
How should surrogates decide whether to continue treatment that sustains the lives of patients who have never been capable of making their own medical decisions? The highest courts of Massachusetts and Indiana have recently responded very differently to this question. Both courts upheld trial judges' decisions to allow tube feeding to be withdrawn. Nonetheless, the contrasting rationales for this outcome offered by the two courts have profoundly different implications.
Allowing to Die; Artificial Feeding; Autonomy; Brain; Brain Pathology; Competence; Consent; Decision Making; Family Members; Freedom; Guardians; Informed Consent; Judicial Action; Legal Aspects; Legal Guardians; Legal Rights; Patients; Rights; Standards; State Interest; Third Party Consent; Tube Feeding; Values; Withholding Treatment;