The Trouble With Futile Care Theory » Secondhand Smoke | A First Things Blog:
1. Futility is not a medical determination; it is a value judgment. Treatment is refused based on “quality of life” judgmentalism and/or “cost-benefit” analysis.
2. Futility makes patient autonomy a one-way street. For years, we have been told that patients should state in writing what they want or don’t want in the event they become incapacitated. Futile Care Theory makes refusing treatment binding for patients who want to die, but allows doctors/bioethicists the final say over the care of patients who expressed a desire to live.
3. Futility strips from patients and families the power to make medicine’s most important health care decisions and give it to strangers.
4. Futile Care Theory is only the first step toward a coming duty to die.
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