End of life care, “best interests”: JB

In JB v University Hospitals Plymouth NHS Trust & Anor [2020] EWCA Civ 1772, the Court of Appeal considered the case of RS. He had had a heart attack in November 2020 and his brain had been deprived of oxygen for at least 45 minutes – since when he had been in a coma. In the Court of Protection, Cohen J decided that it was in RS’s best interests to receive palliative care only rather than life-sustaining treatment. As a result, RS would die within a few weeks [2]. Members of his family disagreed as to his best interests: his wife and children, his treating doctors and the Official Solicitor, acting as litigation friend, supported the decision of the Court of Protection, while his birth family, who were devout Roman Catholics, opposed it [3]. Continue reading