Open Access. Powered by Scholars. Published by Universities.®

Law Commons

Open Access. Powered by Scholars. Published by Universities.®

Articles 1 - 12 of 12

Full-Text Articles in Law

Legal History Of Medical Aid In Dying: Physician Assisted Death In U.S. Courts And Legislatures, Thaddeus Pope Jan 2018

Legal History Of Medical Aid In Dying: Physician Assisted Death In U.S. Courts And Legislatures, Thaddeus Pope

Faculty Scholarship

Terminally ill patients in the United States have four medical options for controlling the time and manner of their death. Three of these are legally available to certain clinically qualified patients. First, all patients may withhold or withdraw life-sustaining treatment. Second, all patients may voluntarily stop eating and drinking. Third, patients with intractable suffering may receive palliative sedation to unconsciousness. In contrast, the fourth option is available in only seven U.S. jurisdictions. Only there may patients legally obtain a prescription for a lethal medication that they can later self-ingest.

Medical aid in dying (MAID) is not yet legally available in …


Procedural Due Process And Intramural Hospital Dispute Resolution Mechanisms: The Texas Advance Directives Act, Thaddeus Pope Jan 2017

Procedural Due Process And Intramural Hospital Dispute Resolution Mechanisms: The Texas Advance Directives Act, Thaddeus Pope

Faculty Scholarship

Increasingly, clinicians and commentators have been calling for the establishment of special adjudicatory dispute resolution mechanisms to resolve intractable medical futility disputes. As a leading model to follow, policymakers both around the United States and around the world have been looking to the conflict resolution provisions in the 1999 Texas Advance Directives Act (TADA).

In this article, I provide a complete and thorough review of the purpose, history, and operation of TADA. I conclude that TADA is a commendable attempt to balance the competing goals of efficiency and fairness in the resolution of these time-sensitive, life-and-death conflicts. But TADA is …


Dynamic Complementarity: Terri's Law And Separation Of Powers Principles In The End-Of-Life Context, O. Carter Snead Oct 2015

Dynamic Complementarity: Terri's Law And Separation Of Powers Principles In The End-Of-Life Context, O. Carter Snead

O. Carter Snead

The bitter dispute over the proper treatment of Theresa Marie Schiavo - a severely brain-damaged woman, unable to communicate and with no living will or advance directive - has garnered enormous attention in the media, both national and international. What began as a heated disagreement between Ms. Schiavo's husband and parents mushroomed into a massive political conflict involving privacy advocates on one side, and right-to-life and disability activists on the other. The battle raged on the editorial pages of the world's newspapers, in the courts, and ultimately, in the legislative and executive branches of the Florida state government. After nearly …


A Better Death In Britain?, Barbara A. Noah Jan 2015

A Better Death In Britain?, Barbara A. Noah

Faculty Scholarship

In the United States, patients and physicians often avoid discussing the inevitability of death and planning for it. As a result, opportunities are missed to make choices that comport with patients’ values and preferences. In the absence of such decisions, the default model is to “err on the side of life,” which often results in overtreatment or inappropriate prolongation of life and avoidable suffering. This Article discusses the United States' end-of-life training and care and Britain’s Liverpool Care Pathway as related to end-of-life care availability, quality, and cost. It further sets forth the argument that while the United States' medical …


The Growing Power Of Healthcare Ethics Committees Heightens Due Process Concerns, Thaddeus Mason Pope Jan 2014

The Growing Power Of Healthcare Ethics Committees Heightens Due Process Concerns, Thaddeus Mason Pope

Faculty Scholarship

Complex ethical situations, such as end-of-life medical treatment disputes, occur on a regular basis in healthcare settings. Healthcare ethics committees (HECs) have been a leading dispute resolution forum for many of these conflicts. But while the function of HECs has evolved from mediation to adjudication, the form of HECs has not evolved to adapt to this expanded and more consequential function.

HECs are typically multidisciplinary groups comprised of representatives from different departments of the healthcare facility: medicine, nursing, law, pastoral care, and social work, for example. HECs were established to support and advise patients, families, and caregivers as they work …


Legal, Medical, And Ethical Issues In Minnesota End-Of-Life Care: An Introduction To The Symposium, Thaddeus Mason Pope Jan 2013

Legal, Medical, And Ethical Issues In Minnesota End-Of-Life Care: An Introduction To The Symposium, Thaddeus Mason Pope

Faculty Scholarship

As America grays, and medicine’s ability to treat the sickest of patients expands, the legal, medical, and ethical issues in end-of-life care become more numerous, pressing, and intertwined. Because Minnesota’s citizens, clinicians, and courts are not far from these concerns, the Hamline University Health Law Institute and the Hamline Law Review hosted an interdisciplinary Symposium entitled "Legal, Medical, and Ethical Issues in Minnesota End-of-Life Care."

On November 9, 2012, we welcomed more than 200 participants to the newly opened Carol Young Anderson and Dennis L. Anderson Center on Hamline University’s Saint Paul campus. These participants included: attorneys, physicians, nurses, social …


Dispute Resolution Mechanisms For Intractable Medical Futility Disputes, Thaddeus Mason Pope Jan 2013

Dispute Resolution Mechanisms For Intractable Medical Futility Disputes, Thaddeus Mason Pope

Faculty Scholarship

Medical futility disputes occur frequently in healthcare facilities across the United States. In this Article, I provide an overview of dispute resolution mechanisms through which healthcare providers can resolve these disputes. In Section I, identify three distinctive features of medical futility disputes. First, they usually concern life-sustaining medical treatment for patients in a hospital’s intensive care unit. Second, these patients typically lack decision making capacity. So, a surrogate must make treatment decisions on the patient’s behalf. Third, this surrogate and the patient’s physician disagree over the treatment plan. The surrogate wants to continue life-sustaining treatment. But the physician thinks that …


Voluntarily Stopping Eating And Drinking: A Legal Treatment Option At The End Of Life, Thaddeus Mason Pope Jan 2011

Voluntarily Stopping Eating And Drinking: A Legal Treatment Option At The End Of Life, Thaddeus Mason Pope

Faculty Scholarship

Despite the growing sophistication of palliative medicine, many individuals continue to suffer at the end of life. It is well settled that patients, suffering or not, have the right to refuse life-sustaining medical treatment (such as dialysis or a ventilator) through contemporaneous instructions, through an advance directive, or through a substitute decision maker. But many ill patients, including a large and growing population with advanced dementia who are not dependent upon life-sustaining medical treatment, do not have this option. They have the same rights, but there is simply no life-sustaining medical treatment to refuse.

Nevertheless, these patients have another right, …


Multi-Institutional Healthcare Ethics Committees: The Procedurally Fair Internal Dispute Resolution Mechanism, Thaddeus Mason Pope Jan 2009

Multi-Institutional Healthcare Ethics Committees: The Procedurally Fair Internal Dispute Resolution Mechanism, Thaddeus Mason Pope

Faculty Scholarship

2.6 million Americans die each year. A majority of these deaths occur in a healthcare institution as the result of a deliberate decision to stop life sustaining medical treatment. Unfortunately, these end-of-life decisions are marked with significant conflict between patients' family members and healthcare providers. Healthcare ethics committees (HECs) have been the dispute resolution forum for many of these conflicts.

HECs generally have been considered to play a mere advisory, facilitative role. But, in fact, HECs often serve a decision making role. Both in law and practice HECs increasingly have been given significant authority and responsibility to make treatment decisions. …


Medical Futility Statutes: No Safe Harbor To Unilaterally Refuse Life-Sustaining Treatment, Thaddeus Mason Pope Jan 2007

Medical Futility Statutes: No Safe Harbor To Unilaterally Refuse Life-Sustaining Treatment, Thaddeus Mason Pope

Faculty Scholarship

Over the past fifteen years, a majority of states have enacted medical futility statutes that permit a health care provider to refuse a patient's request for life-sustaining medical treatment. These statutes typically permit the provider to unilaterally stop LSMT where it would not provide significant benefit or would be contrary to generally accepted health care standards. But these safe harbors are vague and imprecise. Consequently, providers have been reluctant to utilize these medical futility statutes.

This uncertainty probably cannot be reduced. Consensus on substantive measures of medical inappropriateness has proven unachievable. Only a purely process-based approach like that outlined in …


Mediation At The End Of Life: Getting Beyond The Limits Of The Talking Cure, Thaddeus Mason Pope, Ellen A. Waldman Jan 2007

Mediation At The End Of Life: Getting Beyond The Limits Of The Talking Cure, Thaddeus Mason Pope, Ellen A. Waldman

Faculty Scholarship

Mediation has been touted as the magic band-aid to solve end-of-life conflicts. When families and health care providers clash at the end of life, bioethicists and conflict theorists alike have seized upon mediation as the perfect procedural balm. Dissonant values, tragic choices, and roiling grief and loss would be confronted, managed, and soothed during the emotional alchemy of the mediation process. But what is happening in a significant subset of end-of-life disputes is not mediation as we traditionally understand it. Mediation's allure stems from its promise to excavate underlying needs and interests, identify common ground, and push disputants toward more …


Dynamic Complementarity: Terri's Law And Separation Of Powers Principles In The End-Of-Life Context, O. Carter Snead Jan 2005

Dynamic Complementarity: Terri's Law And Separation Of Powers Principles In The End-Of-Life Context, O. Carter Snead

Journal Articles

The bitter dispute over the proper treatment of Theresa Marie Schiavo - a severely brain-damaged woman, unable to communicate and with no living will or advance directive - has garnered enormous attention in the media, both national and international. What began as a heated disagreement between Ms. Schiavo's husband and parents mushroomed into a massive political conflict involving privacy advocates on one side, and right-to-life and disability activists on the other. The battle raged on the editorial pages of the world's newspapers, in the courts, and ultimately, in the legislative and executive branches of the Florida state government. After nearly …