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Palliative Care and End of Life Issues: Palliative Care and End of Life |

Specification and Characteristics of Surrogate Decision Makers: A Comparison of US State Statutes

Erin DeMartino, MD; David Dudzinski, MD; Cavan Doyle, JD; Beau Sperry; Daniel Kramer, MD; Daniel Sulmasy; Paul Mueller
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Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN


Copyright 2016, American College of Chest Physicians. All Rights Reserved.


Chest. 2016;150(4_S):952A. doi:10.1016/j.chest.2016.08.1054
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SESSION TITLE: Palliative Care and End of Life

SESSION TYPE: Original Investigation Slide

PRESENTED ON: Monday, October 24, 2016 at 01:30 PM - 02:30 PM

PURPOSE: Approximately 40% of medical inpatients and up to 95% of intensive care unit patients rely upon proxy decision makers. Each state has unique legislation governing decisions made for patients who do not have a durable power of attorney for healthcare or legal guardian. This introduces variability in the appointment and responsibilities of so-called “default surrogates.” Because patients often cross borders to obtain care, this heterogeneity hampers national discussion on the complex decisions surrounding end-of-life care. This systematic examination of legislative variation examines nationwide statutes governing surrogates.

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