Living wills in English law

Palliat Med. 1993;7(4):283-8. doi: 10.1177/026921639300700404.


There is considerable debate surrounding the provision of life-sustaining treatment to those unable themselves to give consent. This article examines the issues involved from a legal perspective, and discusses two proposed solutions: the 'advance directive' and the 'health care proxy'. It is concluded that a legislative framework should be set up in order to give advance directives a legal status.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Advance Directives / legislation & jurisprudence
  • Child
  • England
  • Humans
  • Life Support Care / legislation & jurisprudence
  • Living Wills / legislation & jurisprudence*
  • Mental Competency / legislation & jurisprudence
  • Patient Advocacy / legislation & jurisprudence
  • Pregnant Women
  • Treatment Refusal / legislation & jurisprudence