Living Will was rarely used prior 1970s worldwide. California was the first state to provide for living wills as a matter of law in 1975, and Texas was the second state to do so in 1976. It's unbelievable that the absence of a Living Will can end up in court, but there are many true stories that you should know to appreciate the importance of making a Living Will. The involvement of family members and relatives in decision-making is sometimes inevitable. The complexity surfaces when there is a disagreement among close family members in the absence of a medical or advance directive. In these historic Living Will court cases, you will learn about the implications of not having medical directives. In some cultures and traditions, family influences are strong in decision-making, and this happens in most countries irrespective of education due to cultural and personal ego. We will present cases that have influenced the decisions in developed countries. The decision-making goes to family members mostly because of a lack of awareness of creating a Living Will. The absence of medical directives leaves the open ground for family members to debate and discuss, putting everyone, including medical practitioners, in dire situations during the decision-making.
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