RefNoCC5/6/19
Alternative Reference numberSYC000000950001
TitleFile of correspondence relating to withdrawal of treatment of Anthony Bland [Deceased 96]
DescriptionTony Bland suffered irreversible brain damage during the crush which left him in a persistent vegetative state (PVS). He was transferred to an Airedale NHS Trust hospital where doctors, with the support of Tony's family came to the view that he would never recover and there was no benefit in keeping him alive. Due to the law at the time there was a risk that ending Tony's life by withdrawing treatment would be classed as a criminal offence.

In this file, the coroner expresses his views on the suggestion that treatment be ended. In the event the NHS Trust successfully applied, to the High Court of Justice for a decision to stop treatment and Tony, the 96th victim of the disaster, died on 3 March 1993.
In the case (Airedale NHS Trust v Bland), Tony was represented by the Official Solicitor who appealed against the High Court's decision, however the appeal failed.

The case was a landmark one. Tony was the first patient in history to be allowed to die by the withdrawal of treatment.

This file relates mainly to correspondence with Dr J G Howe, Consultant Physician, Airedale health Authority.
Date23 Aug 1989 - 2 Dec 1991
Extent1 item
AccessStatusRestricted
AccessConditionsAccess to Coroner’s Court records is restricted for a minimum of 30 years under section 32 of the Freedom of Information Act. The records are also subject to a concurrent restriction of 75 years under the Data Protection Act. Please refer to the beginning of this catalogue (ref. CC5) for further details.
LevelItem
RelatedMaterialUnited Kingdom House of Lords Decisions (Airedale NHS Trust (Respondents) v Bland (acting by his Guardian ad Litem) (Appellant), Judgement, 4 Feb 1993
http://www.bailii.org/uk/cases/UKHL/1992/5.html (accessed Oct 2009)

Howe, J 2006 'The persistent vegetative state, treatment withdrawal, and the Hillsborough disaster: Airedale NHS Trust v Bland', Practical Neurology, 2006:6 pp14-27

Finnis J M 1993 'Bland: Crossing the Rubicon', Law Quarterly Review 109: pp329-337
Harris, J 2003 The Value of Life, London; Routledge
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