But most of the communication, negotiation, and mediation about end-of-life treatment conflicts never gets (or needs to get) framed in legal terms. Disputes are usually resolved way upstream. Most hospitals have ethics consults, ethics committees, ombudsmen, patient advocates, and/or other resources.
One external resource for families of critically ill patients in intensive care is the Intensive Care Hotline. The printed and live consulting offerings are designed to help families:
- Ask the doctors and the nurses the right questions
- Discover the many competing interests in Intensive Care and how treatment may depend on those competing interests
- Stop being intimidated by the Intensive Care team and how you will be seen as equals
- Get "behind the scenes" insight to understand what is really happening in ICU
- Have peace of mind, power, influence decision making and stay in control of their Family's and their critically ill loved one's destiny