Two Steps Forward, One Step Back: Advance Care Planning, Australian Regulatory Frameworks and the Australian Medical Association

Internal Medicine Journal, 39(9), pp. 637-643

Posted: 13 Jul 2016

See all articles by Malcolm Parker

Malcolm Parker

University of Queensland - School of Medicine

Cameron Stewart

The University of Sydney Law School

Lindy Willmott

Queensland University of Technology - Faculty of Law

Colleen Cartwright

Southern Cross University

Date Written: 2007

Abstract

The Australian Medical Association has recently adopted a policy position concerning advance care planning, which is generally supportive of extending patient self-determination beyond the loss of decision-making capacity. It calls for uniform national legislation for legally enforceable advance health directives (AHD), and statutory protection for practitioners who comply with valid AHD, or who do not comply on several grounds. Analysis of the grounds for non-compliance indicate that they undermine patient autonomy, and aspects of the policy are inconsistent with current common law and statutory regimes that allow an adult to complete a legally binding AHD. The policy therefore threatens the patient self-determination, which it endorses, and places doctors who participate in advance care planning at legal risk.

Keywords: advance care planning, enduring power of attorney, advance health directives, patient autonomy, Australian Medical Association, good medical practice

Suggested Citation

Parker, Malcolm and Stewart, Cameron Lloyd and Willmott, Lindy and Cartwright, Colleen, Two Steps Forward, One Step Back: Advance Care Planning, Australian Regulatory Frameworks and the Australian Medical Association (2007). Internal Medicine Journal, 39(9), pp. 637-643. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2808937

Malcolm Parker

University of Queensland - School of Medicine ( email )

St Lucia
Queensland 4072
Australia

Cameron Lloyd Stewart

The University of Sydney Law School ( email )

New Law Building, F10
The University of Sydney
Sydney, NSW 2006
Australia
61 2 9351 0250 (Phone)
61 2 9351 0200 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://sydney.edu.au/law/about/staff/CameronStewart/index.shtml

Lindy Willmott (Contact Author)

Queensland University of Technology - Faculty of Law ( email )

Level 4, C Block Gardens Point
2 George St
Brisbane, QLD 4000
Australia

HOME PAGE: http://staff.qut.edu.au/staff/willmott/

Colleen Cartwright

Southern Cross University ( email )

Lismore, New South Wales 2480
Australia

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