The Underappreciated Role of Advance Directives: How the Pandemic Revitalises Advance Care Planning Actions

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Abstract

Covid-19 continues to alter our way of living and dying. Much attention has focused on how to resolve pressing issues surrounding resource allocation and competing public health ethics. While these are important discussions, the legal and ethical dilemmas of treatment decisions remain highly critical. The urgency to ensure that life and death affairs are in order is magnified due to the possibility of becoming infected with Covid-19. However, many people continue to face challenges in organising their future medical care and treatment. This article explores how the pandemic affects advance care planning through the lenses of law and ethics. The range of Covid-19 implications on advance care planning demonstrates a paradigm shift from a primarily elective function to an essential role in healthcare delivery. This renewed appreciation to advance care planning offers the opportunity to support and sustain the important role that it could play during ordinary and extraordinary times.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)451-475
Number of pages25
JournalEuropean Journal of Health Law
Volume27
Issue number5
Early online date8 Oct 2020
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2020

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