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September 17, 1982

Medico-Legal Implications of Death and Dying

JAMA. 1982;248(11):1395. doi:10.1001/jama.1982.03330110079042

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In this timely book, the author, a California attorney, summarizes current medicolegal opinion affecting decisions concerned with death and dying. So clear, concise, and yet so complete is the exposition that it will be an invaluable reference source for physicians and other health professionals, as well as for the attorneys and courts who are entering more and more into a decision-making process formerly restricted to the patientphysician-family relationship. The author has also drawn on his own 15-year interest in the legal aspects of health problems to add persuasive personal insights where existing legal precedents are nonexistent or inadequate. Religious ethics and societal mores, necessarily factors in many of these decisions, deserve and receive special consideration.

The title does not convey the extent to which related subjects often associated with death, dying, and birth are also discussed. The chapters contain sections on informed consent by competent and incompetent persons and by