How JustAnswer Works:

  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.

Ask Jo C. Your Own Question

Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 69508
Experience:  Over 5 years in practice
12826847
Type Your Law Question Here...
Jo C. is online now

Can life sustaining treatment be withdrawn based upon the 'assumption'

Resolved Question:

Can life sustaining treatment be withdrawn based upon the 'assumption' that the person lacks mental capacity (without carrying out a formal assessment of capacity).
On querying this with the staff, the Dr informed us that 'the treatment was no longer working and in the best interest of my mother, the medical team felt that treatment should be stopped. They have confirmed that at that time, my mother did not have capacity to make her own decisions. The following day they said her condition had improved and when the staff met with her on ward my mother expressed her wishes to go home.
The staff made no effort what so ever to discuss with her the decisions made on her behalf.
Should I take this further?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Jo C. replied 1 year ago.
Hi.
Thank you for your question. My name is ***** ***** I will try to help with this.
Sorry if I am missing the point but why would a person need capacity in this context?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hello
My mothers wishes were that whilst in hospital she would receive treatment for her condition. Her Dr decided that she lacked mental capacity to make that decision and withdrew all treatments.
Expert:  Jo C. replied 1 year ago.
Well, whether she had capacity or not is a non issue from the point of view of the withdrawal of treatment.
People have to consent to treatment and then capacity would be a factor.
The withdrawal of treatment is entirely different and ultimately a matter for the decision of the medical professionals within the rules set down by the GMC.
Whether or not there is a GMC issue depends on the nature of the treatment and her condition and their reasons. But not carrying out a formal assessment when withdrawing treatment would not offend per se.
Sorry if that is bad news.
Can I clarify anything for you?
Jo
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I think my issue is around the staff saying that the following day she had capacity to make a decision to go home. That would have been fine with the family. However they said to us that moving her could result in her dying in the ambulance. Weighing up the risks involved we thought it best to leave her at the hospital rather than take that risk. I asked them (given she now has capacity) whether they had informed her of the risks involved and they said no. I guess we are confused about the section in the MCA that states that the patient should be informed of withdrawal of treatment and involved in that decision prior to putting a syringe driver in and knocked out without fluids.
Expert:  Jo C. replied 1 year ago.
Unless she was subject to any orders they couldn't prevent her leaving.
It is best practice to inform a patient and include them in any decision. That doesn't mean that failure is unlawful though. Unkindness to a patient could be a ground for complaint to a GMC.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 69508
Experience: Over 5 years in practice
Jo C. and 5 other Law Specialists are ready to help you

What Customers are Saying:

 
 
 
  • Thank you so much for your help. Your answers were really useful and came back so quickly. Great! Maggie
< Previous | Next >
  • Thank you so much for your help. Your answers were really useful and came back so quickly. Great! Maggie
  • A quick response, a succinct and helpful answer in simple English. I believe I can now confront the counter party with confidence -- worth the 30 bucks! Rick
  • Wonderful service, prompt, efficient, and accurate. Couldn't have asked for more. I cannot thank you enough for your help. Mary C.
  • This expert is wonderful. They truly know what they are talking about, and they actually care about you. They really helped put my nerves at ease. Thank you so much!!!! Alex
  • Thank you for all your help. It is nice to know that this service is here for people like myself, who need answers fast and are not sure who to consult. GP
  • I couldn't be more satisfied! This is the site I will always come to when I need a second opinion. Justin
  • Just let me say that this encounter has been entirely professional and most helpful. I liked that I could ask additional questions and get answered in a very short turn around. Esther
 
 
 

Meet The Experts:

 
 
 
  • Jo C.

    Jo C.

    Barrister

    Satisfied Customers:

    30316
    Over 5 years in practice
< Previous | Next >
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/EM/emus/2015-7-7_192327_bigstockportraitofconfidentfemale.64x64.jpg Jo C.'s Avatar

    Jo C.

    Barrister

    Satisfied Customers:

    30316
    Over 5 years in practice
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/BE/benjones/2015-12-1_0437_ennew.64x64.jpg Ben Jones's Avatar

    Ben Jones

    UK Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    11553
    Qualified Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/BU/Buachaill/2012-5-25_211156_barrister5.64x64.jpg Buachaill's Avatar

    Buachaill

    Barrister

    Satisfied Customers:

    1754
    Barrister 17 years experience
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/JO/jojobi/2013-3-19_0265_maxlowryphoto.64x64.jpg Max Lowry's Avatar

    Max Lowry

    Advocate

    Satisfied Customers:

    894
    LLB, 10 years post qualification experience
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/UK/UKLawyer/2012-4-12_9849_F2.64x64.jpg UK_Lawyer's Avatar

    UK_Lawyer

    Solicitor

    Satisfied Customers:

    750
    I am a qualified solicitor and an expert in UK law.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/KA/Kasare/kasare.64x64.jpg Kasare's Avatar

    Kasare

    Solicitor

    Satisfied Customers:

    402
    Solicitor, 10 yrs plus experience in civil litigation, employment and family law
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/OS/osh/2015-7-7_19268_gettyimagesb.64x64.jpg Joshua's Avatar

    Joshua

    Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    8199
    LL.B (Hons), Higher Prof. Dip. Law & Practice