alexa Proxy decision making for incompetent patients. An ethical and empirical analysis
Medicine

Medicine

General Medicine: Open Access

Author(s): Emanuel EJ, Emanuel LL

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RECENTLY, proxy or surrogate decision making regarding the termination of life-sustaining interventions for incompetent patients has been widely endorsed and promoted. After the Cruzan decision and the Patient Self-Determination Act of 1990, many states enacted proxy statutes specifically for health care. Indeed, even states such as New York and Massachusetts, which in the past had avoided enacting any legislation on living wills and securing the rights of patients, have quickly adopted See also pp 2082 and 2101. health care proxy laws. Simultaneously with this growing enthusiasm for proxy decision making have arisen ethical and empirical doubts about whether proxies can select interventions that the patient would have selected. These divergent trends confront us just as there is a growing need to develop policies on this issue. Consequently, it is important to examine several questions on proxy decision making: How widely endorsed is proxy decision making?

This article was published in Journal of American Medical Association and referenced in General Medicine: Open Access

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