Measure requires consent before ending life-sustaining treatment
State Rep. Jeff Noble today testified before the House Families, Children, and Seniors Committee in support of his legislation requiring a physician to obtain consent before withholding or withdrawing life-sustaining treatment.
Earlier this year, Kansas enacted a measure called Simon’s Law after the parents of a seriously ill child discovered after their son’s death that the medical team placed a do-not-resuscitate order on him without the parents’ knowledge.
Michigan families have reported experiences similar to Simon’s parents while reviewing a loved one’s medical records, both before and after the patient’s death.
The bill prevents doctors and hospitals from side-stepping the family’s authority when there is a dispute about the patient’s care. If treatment is going to be withheld, the patient’s guardian, advocate, or parents must be involved in the decision and process.
“My bill is aimed to protect the rights of patients and their families to make medical decisions, which could literally be the difference between life and death,” said Rep. Noble, of Plymouth. “This legislation extends protection to all medically frail patients. Only decisions regarding life-sustaining treatment options will require explicit consent.”
House Bill 5076 remains under consideration by the House Families, Children, and Seniors Committee.