Patient Autonomy Essay

Theoretically, all competent patients should have the right to make their own medical decisions regardless if the professional disagrees with them, however Starson’s level of In conclusion, Starson’s case is a perfect example of the competence debate and whether it is alright to take away patient autonomy in certain situations. Although mental illness can cloud judgment, and should be taken very seriously, the Supreme Court declared him competent enough based off of various tests.

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If the physician found it went a 11 gainst his beliefs to allow the patient to deny a treatment he believes to be vital to Starson’s well being, he could have transferred him to another doctor and withdraw from the case.

So as made evide 12 nt, Starson has the right to deny the treatment.

Starson, a physics prodigy, was sent to a psychiatric hospital after making various death threats and was deemed not criminally responsible due to mental illness.

He had to chose between living in a me 1 ntal hospital for the remainder of his life, or undergo treatment for his bipolar disorder, which would allow him to leave the psychiatric hospital and live among society.

Caitlin enters the room with her significant other Isaiah to wait for the nurse in the family planning clinic.

Elise is a nurse who has been working for the family planning clinic for a few years, enters the room to meet her next patient of the day. However, even if they were to force treatment, there is no guarantee that Starson would take his medication, since he would be living among society without a physician present everyday ensuring his medication is being taken. Therefore, there is a large chance that if he was forced to take his medication, he eventually would not once he is out of the psychiatric hospital, and therefore his disorder would be more dangerous in society than in a hospital where he is supervised. His doctors did not agree with his deci 4 sion, and therefore took it to court, however the Supreme Court deemed him competent to make his own medical decisions.Firstly, I will argue that every competent patient 5 has the right to deny their medical treatment without intervention, and secondly I will argue why a patient with mental illness should be forced to comply with their recommended treatment.However, the medic 2 ation would slow his thinking and prevent him from being able to continue his research.He chose to sta 3 y in the psychiatric hospital without treatment after deciding that his research was more important than being treated and living among society.That bei 7 ng said, being competent is not necessarily about what decision is chosen, but the procedure it took the patient to making the decision.The physician, arguably, is using an “Outcome Standard of Competence”, which means he declared the patient incompetent based off of not choosing the treatment he thinks is objectively right.The doctor should have used a “Standard 8 of Decision- Making Competence” which focuses on the process of reasoning.If we let medical 9 professionals take away our autonomy after being determined competent, this would result in a slippery slope, which could lead to patients losing their autonomy in situations even more extreme and questionable.


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