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Have you withheld any beneficial care from your patients lately because of their wishes, against the wishes of their child?

I was thinking about the ethics of medicine which led me to this question. In this scenario, the patient has been in a horrible accident, the patient is 65, and is now on life support. This life support is the only thing keeping the patient alive. The patient's daughter who is 30 wants to keep the patient alive. Who do you listen to in this scenario? #medicine #healthcare #hospital-and-health-care


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Jama’s Answer

Depends. Is there an advance directive or living will in place? If so, I follow the orders of that. If not, if the adult daughter is next of kin, I do what I'm legally obligated to do. My opinions or feelings stay seperate from the care I provide. I'm there to provide care and the like. Not to determine, or undermine. I advise you to do the same.


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Dheeraj’s Answer

Every state and hospital has a due process and team involved in decision making in this case scenario starting with patients advance directive /living will after confirming that the patient is brain dead.
This is an objective process will more than one clinician making final decision.


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Katia’s Answer

Dr. Nagpal answered the question. It is not a simple process and it is not confined to the decision of one healthcare professional only. In cases where there is no living will or medical power of attorney involved prior to the incident, the ethics committee of the hospital gets involved and the decision always follow a due process.


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