Refusing advance refusals: advance directives and life-sustaining medical treatment

Willmott, Lindy, White, Benjamin P., & Howard, Michelle T. (2006) Refusing advance refusals: advance directives and life-sustaining medical treatment. Melbourne University Law Review, 30(1), pp. 211-243.

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The law recognises the right of a competent adult to make an advance refusal of life-sustaining medical treatment. However, this right is not unqualified and there are circumstances in which a health professional or a court will be permitted to disregard an advance directive. Underpinning this qualified right is the tension between the principles of self-determination or autonomy, and sanctity of life. This article explores the excuses available in Australia to health professionals who do not wish to comply with an advance directive. It compares the common law with those jurisdictions that have enacted legislation, and evaluates and critiques the different excuses available.

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ID Code: 7094
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: Advance directives, Adult guardianship law, End of life decision-making, Living wills
ISSN: 0025-8938
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > LAW AND LEGAL STUDIES (180000) > LAW (180100) > Law not elsewhere classified (180199)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Law
Current > Research Centres > Australian Centre for Health Law Research
Current > Schools > School of Law
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2006 (The authors)
Deposited On: 20 Apr 2007 00:00
Last Modified: 04 Feb 2015 02:05

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