Rejecting the baby Doe rules and defending a "negative" analysis of the best interests standard

Journal of Medicine and Philosophy 30 (4):331 – 352 (2005)
Two incompatible policies exist for guiding medical decisions for extremely premature, sick, or terminally ill infants, the Best Interests Standard and the newer, 20-year old "Baby Doe" Rules. The background, including why there were two sets of Baby Doe Rules, and their differences with the Best Interests Standard, are illustrated. Two defenses of the Baby Doe Rules are considered and rejected. The first, held by Reagan, Koop, and others, is a "right-to-life" defense. The second, held by some leaders of the American Academy of Pediatrics, is that the Baby Doe Rules are benign and misunderstood. The Baby Doe Rules should be rejected since they can thwart compassionate and individualized decision-making, undercut duties to minimize unnecessary suffering, and single out one group for treatment adults would not want for themselves. In these ways, they are inferior to the older Best Interests Standard. A "negative" analysis of the Best Interests Standard is articulated and defended for decision-making for all incompetent individuals.
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Revision history Request removal from index
Download options
PhilPapers Archive

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy on self-archival     Papers currently archived: 9,357
External links
  • Through your library Configure
    References found in this work BETA

    No references found.

    Citations of this work BETA

    No citations found.

    Similar books and articles

    Monthly downloads

    Added to index


    Total downloads

    9 ( #128,813 of 1,088,623 )

    Recent downloads (6 months)

    1 ( #69,601 of 1,088,623 )

    How can I increase my downloads?

    My notes
    Sign in to use this feature

    Start a new thread
    There  are no threads in this forum
    Nothing in this forum yet.