Letters Terminal illness debate

How to hope for the best while planning for the worst in terminal illness

BMJ 2013; 346 doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmj.f3062 (Published 15 May 2013) Cite this as: BMJ 2013;346:f3062
  1. Richard Harding, reader in palliative care1
  1. 1Cicely Saunders Institute, King’s College London, London SE5 9PJ, UK
  1. richard.harding{at}kcl.ac.uk

Blackhall faces the challenges of the US system, whereby Medicare hospice benefit is payable only to those certified by a physician to be in the last six months of life and willing to forgo potentially curative treatment.1 This places a greater emphasis on accurate prognostication, and takes away the “hope” of potentially curative treatment being …

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