The court granted a declaration that it is not mandatory to bring before the Court the withdrawal of Clinically Assisted Nutrition and Hydration ("CANH") from Mr Y who has a prolonged disorder of consciousness in circumstances where the clinical team and Mr Y's family are agreed that it is not in his best interests that he continues to receive that treatment. There is no rule of principle or binding authority for the proposition that there is a legal obligation that all cases concerning the withdrawal of CANH from a person who lacks capacity must be sanctioned by the court. There is a rule of practice that in general such cases should be determined in the Court of Protection. However, the decision in Re M establishes that where the clinicians have followed the MCA and good medical practice, there is no dispute with the family of the person who lacks capacity or others interested in his welfare, and no other doubts or concerns have been identified, there is no requirement to bring the matter before the court. However, the court said that it was not necessary or appropriate to make a declaration that applies beyond this case and the release from liability sought was too wide.
Read the full text of the judgment on Bailii