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Point and Counterpoint |

POINT: Do Physicians Have a Responsibility to Provide Recommendations Regarding Goals of Care to Surrogates of Dying Patients in the ICU? YesRecommend Care to Surrogates of the Dying? Yes

Paul J. Hutchison, MD
Author and Funding Information

From the Division of Pulmonary and Critical Care, Stritch School of Medicine, Loyola University Chicago.

CORRESPONDENCE TO: Paul J. Hutchison, MD, Loyola University Medical Center, 2160 S First Ave, Bldg 54 Room 131A, Maywood, IL 60153; e-mail: paul.hutchison@lumc.edu


FINANCIAL/NONFINANCIAL DISCLOSURES: The author has reported to CHEST that no potential conflicts of interest exist with any companies/organizations whose products or services may be discussed in this article.

Reproduction of this article is prohibited without written permission from the American College of Chest Physicians. See online for more details.


Chest. 2015;147(6):1453-1455. doi:10.1378/chest.15-0273
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Approximately 20% of Americans spend time in an ICU around the time of their death, and most deaths follow a decision to limit life-sustaining therapies.1,2 Many factors contribute to treatment limitation decisions, including patient prognosis, expected benefits and burdens of available treatments, and patient preferences. Because many patients in the ICU lack decision-making capacity, a surrogate decision-maker often speaks on behalf of the patient and collaborates with the treating physician to determine treatment goals.

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