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Vol. 17 - Num. 65

Medicine and Law

Legal and ethical dilemmas concerning the medical assistance to the minors

Mariano Casado Blancoa, P Hurtado Sendinb, M Castellano Arroyoc

aFacultad de Medicina. Universidad de Extremadura. Badajoz. España.
bHospital Universitario Materno-Infantil de Badajoz. España.
cCátedra de Medicina Legal. Facultad de Medicina. Universidad de Alcalá de Henares. Madrid. España.

Correspondence: M Casado. E-mail:

Reference of this article: Casado Blanco M, Hurtado Sendin P, Castellano Arroyo M. Legal and ethical dilemmas concerning the medical assistance to the minors. Rev Pediatr Aten Primaria. 2015;17:e83-e93.

Published in Internet: 12-03-2015 - Visits: 23200


In this article we will try to address an issue of considerable complexity and multiple facets, such as the medical care to minors.

To do this we must start from the fact that, from the legal point of view, children are subjects of rights, and they are progressively provided with capacity to exercise those rights. Therefore we cannot consider children as if they were legally incapacitated persons. They need protection, and two conditions concur in them, first the condition of being the subjects of rights they are able to exercise and second their condition of being dependent subjects of their legal representatives, by which at certain times they need to supplement this capacity, so that their actions are appropriate.

Any medical activity basically focuses on the relationship between doctor and patient, where both need each other. But this relationship is considerably complicated by the world of paediatric medicine where the patient is a minor. In these cases, very different considerations, both legal and deontological raise doubts about whether what I'm doing is right or it could be done otherwise, but ultimately it forces the doctor to make decisions with reference at least to the attendance.


Ethics Legislation Mature Minors Practice



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