Introduction - medicine in the courtroom : judges, ethics and the law

Smith, Stephen W and Coggon, John and Hobson, Clark and Huxtable, Richard and McGuinness, Sheelagh and Miola, José and Neal, Mary; Smith, Stephen W. and Coggon, John and Clark Hobson and Richard Huxtable and McGuinness, Sheelagh and Miola, José and Neal, Mary, eds. (2017) Introduction - medicine in the courtroom : judges, ethics and the law. In: Ethical Judgments. Hart Publishing, Oxford, pp. 1-10. ISBN 9781509904143

Full text not available in this repository.Request a copy from the Strathclyde author

Abstract

In the ‘conjoined twins’ case, Re A , the Court of Appeal had to issue a judgment under the sharp glare of the global media spotlight, on a question both divisive and morally significant: could English law sanction the separation of two legally distinct but physically united babies, knowing that one would be killed and one saved by the operation, and in the face of a refusal to consent by the parents but with medical opinion that favoured the surgery? In the much-cited dictum that heads this introduction, Ward LJ denies the relevance of the moral or ethical dimensions of the case as a component of his legal determination, 2 despite their obvious and urgent nature. 3 His judicial reasoning, he suggests, draws purely from law. In conceptual legal jargon, he commits to a formalist position: judges should not bring extra-legal considerations to their decision-making, and by implication, can find all of the necessary answers to the question within the law itself.

ORCID iDs

Smith, Stephen W, Coggon, John, Hobson, Clark, Huxtable, Richard, McGuinness, Sheelagh, Miola, José and Neal, Mary ORCID logoORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0003-2374-868X; Smith, Stephen W., Coggon, John, Clark Hobson, Richard Huxtable, McGuinness, Sheelagh, Miola, José and Neal, Mary