Fook J. - THE IMPORTANCE OF CRITICAL REFLECTION IN POSTMODERN SOCIAL WORK, 2 5 2013
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A disagreement between a patient and her treating physician is a situation that both doctor and patient would likely rather avoid. Currently, a competent patient can make a treatment choice that is contrary to the advice of her treating physician, even if the choice results in death 1. However, consider the situation where there is a disagreement in treatment choice between the parent of an ill child and the physician. These disagreements often occur in cases where the prognosis for the severely ill infant or child is that they will survive, but with a poor quality of life. The presumption is that the parent has authority to make treatment decisions for a child when the child does not have the capacity to do so. What should the health care professional do when faced with the situation of a parent who disagrees with the recommended course of treatment?