HC Deb 09 November 1999 vol 337 c480W
Mr. Amess

To ask the Secretary of State for Health what plans he has to introduce legislation requiring that the withdrawal of food and fluid from persistent vegetative state patients be subject to a court order but otherwise following the Guideline of the British Medical Association on the withdrawal of treatment. [97097]

Ms Stuart

The courts have ruled that the withdrawal of artificial nutrition and hydration from a patient who is diagnosed in a persistent vegetative state should first be referred to a court for a decision. We have no plans to change the law in this respect.

We have no plans to introduce legislation requiring the guidelines of the British Medical Association on the Withholding and Withdrawal of Life-prolonging Medical Treatment to be followed.

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