Bioethics Blogs

British Columbia Court of Appeal Tosses Unwanted Treatment Claim

I have recently highlighted (here and here and here) the growing success of legal claims when clinicians administer unwanted life-sustaining treatment.  One recent case from British Columbia goes the other way.

Brenlee Kemp sued Vancouver General Hospital for battery on her mother. The trial court rejected the hospital’s claim to dismiss the claim. The court ruled the battery claim should go to trial, because there was conflicting evidence regarding whether consent was given.

The Court of Appeal reversed. The court explained that the existence of express consent is irrelevant, because the clinicians had implied consent. First, Brenlee made desperate pleased to “help” her mother. Second, she was present during the resuscitation and made on objections to the resuscitation efforts taking place in close proximity to her.

The views, opinions and positions expressed by these authors and blogs are theirs and do not necessarily represent that of the Bioethics Research Library and Kennedy Institute of Ethics or Georgetown University.