Gillick vs. West Norfolk and Wisbech Area Health Authority Case

Only available on StudyMode
  • Topic: Gillick competence, Medical law, Marion's Case
  • Pages : 4 (1435 words )
  • Download(s) : 130
  • Published : January 19, 2011
Open Document
Text Preview
Gillick competence is a term originating in England and is used in medical law to decide whether a child (16 years or younger) is able to consent to his or her own medical treatment, without the need for parental permission or knowledge. The standard is based on a decision of the House of Lords in the case Gillick v West Norfolk and Wisbech Area Health Authority [1985] 3 All ER 402 (HL). The case is binding in England and Wales, and has been approved in Australia, Canada and New Zealand. Similar provision is made in Scotland by The Age of Legal Capacity (Scotland) Act 1991. In Northern Ireland, although separate legislation applies, the then Department of Health and Social Services Northern Ireland stated that there was no reason to suppose that the House of Lords' decision would not be followed by the Northern Ireland Courts. Contents

1 The Gillick decision
2 Subsequent developments
3 Australian law
4 Confusion regarding Gillick competency
5 Fraser Guidelines
6 References
7 Link

[edit] The Gillick decision
The Gillick case involved a health departmental circular advising doctors on the contraception of minors (for this purpose, under sixteens). The circular stated that the prescription of contraception was a matter for the doctor's discretion, and that they could be prescribed to under sixteens without parental consent. This matter was litigated because an activist, Mrs. Victoria Gillick (née Gudgeon), ran an active campaign against the policy. Mrs Gillick, a mother of ten (five girls, five boys), sought a declaration that prescribing contraception was illegal because the doctor would commit an offence of encouraging sex with a minor, and that it would be treatment without consent as consent vested in the parent. The issue before the House of Lords was only whether the minor involved could give consent. 'Consent' here was considered in the broad sense of consent to battery or assault: in the absence of patient consent to...
tracking img