End of life care and “best interests”: update

We previously noted the case of JB v University Hospitals Plymouth NHS Trust & Anor [2020] EWCA Civ 1772, in which the Court of Appeal considered the case of RS, a Pole, who had had a heart attack in November 2020 and had suffered serious brain-damage as a result of oxygen deprivation. In the Court of Protection, Cohen J had decided that it was in RS’s best interests to receive palliative care only rather than life-sustaining treatment, and the Court of Appeal refused an application for permission to appeal against that decision. RS’s birth family, from whom he was estranged, had argued that, as a Roman Catholic, RS would wish to be kept alive and had unsuccessfully sought permission to appeal the decision. There had also been also two failed applications for interim relief to the European Court of Human Rights, one of them by the Polish Government. Continue reading