Thomas Gutmann

Cured Dignity and Private Law

  • Abstract

Informations and abstract

Keywords: Human dignity - German medical law - autonomy - end-of-life decisions.

In German Medical Law, references to the legal notion of «human dignity» (Art. 1, par. 1 German Basic Law) have gained in importance during the last three decades. It is now almost beyond dispute that the legal notion of dignity first and foremost safeguards respect for patient autonomy, also in end-of-life decisions and including advance directives. There is, however, a lively discussion about the importance of the legal notion of human dignity in the allocation of scarce life-saving medical resources. Finally, it is essentially contested whether a legal right to dignity should be ascribed to human embryos or even to stem cells.

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