Involve children with life limiting conditions in decisions to stop treatment, says new guidance

BMJ 2015; 350 doi: (Published 24 March 2015) Cite this as: BMJ 2015;350:h1621
  1. Nigel Hawkes
  1. 1London

The views of children who have incurable and life limiting conditions should be actively sought and considered in decisions on whether to continue life prolonging treatment, says new guidance from the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health.1

Although circumstances will differ, children who have had extensive experience of disease and its treatment, such as repeated cycles of chemotherapy, will have more informed views about continuing treatment than an adult facing treatment for the first time, the document says. The presumption should be that children will be involved in decisions “at a level that reflects their …

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