Court Rejects Constitutional Challenge to Texas "Medical Futility" Law

On Friday, a Harris County, Texas trial court rejected a constitutional challenge to the Texas Advance Directives Act.

Judge Bill Burke said it would be "a case of throwing the baby out with the bath water" to repeal the controversial 1999 law, enacted in response to doctors' push to eliminate care that prolongs suffering in terminal patients. 

"It would be a big mistake to throw out a statute in place for nearly 20 years that seems to be working pretty well. . . . If you think the law doesn't provide sufficient protection for patients, go to the Legislature to remedy it."

This ruling was poignant for me as I spent all-day Saturday at the University of New Mexico Law School with appellate judges and professors discussing the need for courts to tackle constitutional challenges to state laws.  

Plaintiff Evelyn Kelly

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