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Refusal Of Treatment Notes

BCL Law Notes > Medical Law and Ethics Notes

This is an extract of our Refusal Of Treatment document, which we sell as part of our Medical Law and Ethics Notes collection written by the top tier of University Of Oxford students.

The following is a more accessble plain text extract of the PDF sample above, taken from our Medical Law and Ethics Notes. Due to the challenges of extracting text from PDFs, it will have odd formatting:

REFUSAL OF TREATMENT

LAW

1. Airedale NHS Trust v Bland - competent person can refuse treatment even if this means they'll die

2. St George's v S - woman entitled to refuse treatment even though meant death to her unborn child too

OPENING POINTS

1. Law recognises patient's right to refuse treatment, but questions about capacity have been used as a means to subvert this right

ETHICAL POINTS

1. Herring - is refusing necessary medical treatment tantamount to suicide - link to doctrine of double effect

2. David Shaw - current law is based on an illogical distinction: euthanasia is not permitted but patients entitled to reject life-support

3. Gorsuch - provides example of a patient who refuses blood transfusion for religious reasons

PATIENTS SHOULDN'T BE ALLOWED TO REFUSE TREATMENT

1. Mason and Laurie - say how St George's emphasizes how law should be able to override competent patients refusal of medical treatment, as otherwise there is too much heed to cult of self-determination'

USE OF DISABILITY TO GET AROUND IT

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