I am a PhD student trying to survive on a small bursary. I left my post as a nurse for 30 years to persue the PhD because it is clear that research needs to be undertaken to improve paediatric end of life medical guidance in the UK when Doctors and parents disagree about what is in the child's best interests.
My research involves evaluating medical dispute resolution processes utilised in other countries, to see if those in the Uk can be improved; and my aim is to create a more transparent, robust, structured and child rights based model of decision making, to be used in conflict situations in clinical settings in the UK. This research had four objectives. Firstly, to provide an overarching picture of how Medical Law operates in different countries and cultures when it is applied to dying children and parental/medical disagreements over treatment options; To achieve this, it will identify, describe and analyse relevant domestic legislation and case law in each country and the demands of medical guidance relating to such disputes. The second objective is to ascertain the level of impact International Conventions have had on National Child Rights Law and Medical Guidance in each country pertaining to child participation and representation in medical decision-making. The third objective is to locate and interrogate sub literatures underpinning the reasoning behind any differences found. Finally, the fourth objective is to evaluate findings in relation to the Law, Medical Guidance and process in England and Wales, with a view to constructing an innovative model of decision making which satisfies the rights and best interests of the child primarily; but also incorporates parental rights and protects the professional integrity of doctors.