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Discussion of Medical Treatment Cases in Light of Ward LJs Judgment - Case Study Example

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The paper "Discussion of Medical Treatment Cases in Light of Ward LJ’s Judgment" states that the circumstances of a case are paramount in determining the course of action in cases of medical treatment, but surgeon advice can go only so far as determining the result. …
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Discussion of Medical Treatment Cases in Light of Ward LJs Judgment
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Download file to see previous pages The title Absolute Right is a little misleading to say the least, as the Act itself provides certain exceptions as to when and if the Right to Life may be forgone. These exceptions, such as those found in times of war, in the justifiable use of force by public officials in their line of duty, making an arrest, etc, allow the respective authorities to breach the right to life without consequence. One such exception is in the case of the medical profession, where several instances may arise when a treatment rendered by the practitioners may or may not prove beneficial to the patient and may result in death as a likely consequence. Re A (Children) (Conjoined twins: Medical Treatment) (No.1) (2000) is a fine example of this, and the decision awarded by the Court of Appeal upholding a defence of necessity considered both the decision of the parents and the surgical prowess of the medical practitioners so as to take that course of action which was least detrimental to either twin. Thus, arose several different dilemmas all in one go, combining ethics, profession and legal liabilities under one umbrella, the defence of necessity.
Legally, the importance of determining the least harmful course of action is protected by the aforementioned defence. Where the right to life is under threat, the courts held in Re A, there can be no excuse to violate it unless on balance there was a clear distinction to be made in favor of undergoing a treatment which curbs a greater evil from being committed than the one which has to be undergone. In this case, the evil itself is a breach of the right to life or the eventual death of Mary as a result of the surgical procedure. Mary and Jodie, who were Siamese twins, would both have had to end their life if they were not separated and Mary, being the weaker twin with failing organs and drawing blood from Jodie, was to be in essence the cause of Jodie’s death, who was developing normally otherwise. Thus, the two deaths were a far worse result than just one, and the defence of necessity appropriately applied as it prevented a greater evil, the deaths of both, from occurring and resulting in the eventual death of Mary, the weaker sibling. ...Download file to see next pages Read More
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