End of life case to be argued on Monday

December 7, 2012 - Ottawa - The Supreme Court of Canada will hear oral arguments on Monday, December 10, 2012 in the case of Brian Cuthbertson, et al. v. Hassan Rasouli by his Litigation Guardian and Substitute Decision Maker, Parichehr Salasel.

The case involves Hasan Rasouli who became dependent on mechanical ventilation following surgery for the removal of a benign tumour. His family has insisted that he is responsive and that ventilation continue. Mr. Rasouli's physicians insist, however, that mechanical ventilation is of no medical benefit and that the family's consent is not required for its withdrawal. In the months following the initial court rulings in the case, Mr. Rasouli's condition has improved, with even his doctors conceding that he is no longer in a vegitative state but that he is minimally conscious.

The MHLC has filed a intervention brief jointly with HALCO, the HIV and AIDS Legal Clinic of Ontario. The purpose of the intervention is to address the potential impact of the Court's ruling on treatment decision making in contexts other than end of life decisions.

The MHLC is represented by Marshall Swadron and Mercedes Perez of Swadron Associates. Supreme Court proceedings are broadcast on CPAC.

To view the interveners' factum of MHLC and HALCO, please click here.