Before the Supreme Court, two lower courts ruled that under Ontario's Health Care Consent Act (HCCA), Rasouli's doctors need to have Salasel's consent to withdraw life support
, and that, if she refused, they would need to refer the case to the province's Consent and Capacity Board.
This is significant as it suggests that physicians do not have the final say in whether to withdraw life support
What makes vital organ retrieval ethically permissible for these patients is that it is secondary to--and essentially linked with--a valid decision to withdraw life support
In summary, most often death in critical care follows a decision to withdraw life support
when active treatment has not benefitted the patient.
Thus the existing practices for determining death during controlled DCD, where a consensual decision has been made to withdraw life support
and withhold CPR, are consistent with medical, ethical, and legal standards permitting organ donation.
It was after the family made the independent decision to withdraw life support
that they approached the health care team with Sarah Beth's wishes to become an organ donor.
Very soon it became apparent to me that Pinellas County Judge George Greer, who presided over the guardianship of Theresa Marie Schiavo, had closed his mind to the possibility - - any possibility - - that he had made an error in granting Michael Schiavo's petition to withdraw life support
after a trial in January 2000.
Though doctors often have to address the very thorny issue of when to withdraw life support
, a new aspect of the debate has surfaced in Britain.
At the very least, there is a real possibility that a reasonable person would regard permanent, lifelong quadriplegia as a state worse than death, and this fact places a decision to withdraw life support
within the bounds of moral permissibility.
Critics also worry about autoresuscitation, and about the recovery of organs being the impetus for, or a factor in, the decision to withdraw life support
Doctors had advised her family to withdraw life support
That is one of the reasons I expressed concern with the decision to withdraw life support
from the patient in this case.