Minnesota Supreme Court ponders guardians’ role

  • Article by: David Chanen , Star Tribune
  • Updated: February 3, 2014 - 8:17 PM

For decades, Minnesota has allowed guardians to make end-of-life decisions for their wards. The State Supreme Court takes a closer look.

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mandansmomFeb. 3, 14 8:26 PM

Are we seriously suggesting that it should take a court order to die if we are unable to speak for ourselves? Is this really "smaller government"?

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benedict636Feb. 3, 1410:01 PM

I can tell you as a retired critical care physician, this is an area where the legal mind almost always makes the situation worse. Often these issues come up as an emergency situation. I have been involved with patients with guardianship were sudden deterioration makes the issue of transfer to the ICU and putting a patient on life support is an immediate issue. Often there is no possible benefit from this invasive and expensive care. The right decision is often not to start it. Someone who can advise the medical team on an instant basis is vital. Mishandling of these cases because of having to look for judges (you won't find them at night or weekends) leads to obscenities of care and drive costs though the roof with no possible benefit.

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stplooklistnFeb. 4, 14 5:12 AM

A few months ago the courts were crying they are stretched too tight to handle cases. So leave well enough alone and take care of what is your domain.

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skewitallFeb. 5, 14 5:29 AM

"Guardians do need a judge’s consent for psychosurgery, electroshock, sterilization or experimental treatment" But not for "Termination", and that is the word that they used. Severe brain damage? And people are crying out about letting a brain "dead" person go? What? Okay to "terminate" someone who already has disabilities when they are not brain dead?? How about a fetus with half a brain, or a fatal disease that is found in the third trimester, she is now forced to deliver. Prepared to do all that, let a guardian decide, what is legally more control than a women has over her own body. Why have even have to have "consent" from the court for those prior listed things, when termination is so easier?

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