Challenging questions and ethical obligations: the ethics of everyday practice > 21 January 2015

Lucy James


The withdrawal of treatment is one of the most emotionally challenging and ethically complex aspects of end-of-life care. As our ability to prolong life progresses, the necessity to address issues such as the withdrawal of treatment increases in parallel. The subject has been approached from an ethical point of view with the aim of establishing the utility of ethical frameworks in the 21st century. To achieve this, the withdrawal of treatment is outlined and the arguments both for and against this topic are considered. Ethical frameworks are summarised and applied to the Airedale NHS Trust v. Bland [1993] case. It is argued that through asking ethical questions, one seems not to shed light on the matter, but only emphasises its complexity. In conclusion, although a traditional ethical framework may be applied to the withdrawal of treatment, multiple criticisms accentuate its impracticality and irrelevance in the modern medical world.


(to be confirmed)


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