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Editorials: POINT/COUNTERPOINT EDITORIALS |

Rebuttal From Dr. Fine

Robert L. Fine, MD
Author and Funding Information

Affiliations: Dr. Fine is Director of the Office of Clinical Ethics and Palliative Care for Baylor Health Care System, Chairperson of the Institutional Ethics Committee at Baylor University Medical Center, and Director of the Palliative Care Consultation Service at Baylor University Medical Center.

Correspondence to: Robert L. Fine, MD, Office of Clinical Ethics and Palliative Care, Baylor Health Care System, 3434 Swiss Ave, Suite 205, Dallas, TX 75204; e-mail: robertf@baylorhealth.edu


Reproduction of this article is prohibited without written permission from the American College of Chest Physicians (www.chestjournal.org/site/misc/reprints.xhtml).


© 2009 American College of Chest Physicians


Chest. 2009;136(4):971-972. doi:10.1378/chest.09-1268
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Extract

I thank the editors and Dr. Truog for the opportunity to participate in this debate and hope our readers find it enlightening. The major argument leveled against the TADA is that it “excludes the involvement of the courts” and may be unconstitutional. The law does not exclude the courts, but directs the court to review matters it is most qualified to judge: compliance with procedure, not medical decision making. The most recent court arguments against TADA occurred in the Gonzales case that Dr. Truog previously criticized.1 Plaintiff's attorneys alleged TADA violated both state and federal constitutions. But the court-appointed guardian ad litem (representing the interests of Baby Emilio) argued that TADA violated neither.2 In fact, no court has declared TADA unconstitutional after 10 years of use.

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