2017 New Mexico Statutes
Chapter 24 - Health and Safety
Article 7A - Uniform Health-Care Decisions
Section 24-7A-6.1 - Life-sustaining treatment for unemancipated minors.

Universal Citation: NM Stat § 24-7A-6.1 (2017)

24-7A-6.1. Life-sustaining treatment for unemancipated minors.

A. Except as otherwise provided by law, a parent or guardian of an unemancipated minor may make that minor's health-care decisions.

B. A parent or guardian of an unemancipated minor shall have the authority to withhold or withdraw life-sustaining treatment for the unemancipated minor, subject to the provisions of this section and the standards for surrogate decision-making for adults provided for in the Uniform Health-Care Decisions Act.

C. Subject to the provisions of Subsection B of this section, if an unemancipated minor has capacity sufficient to understand the nature of that unemancipated minor's medical condition, the risks and benefits of treatment and the contemplated decision to withhold or withdraw life-sustaining treatment, that unemancipated minor shall have the authority to withhold or withdraw life-sustaining treatment.

D. For purposes of Subsection C of this section, a determination of the mental and emotional capacity of an unemancipated minor shall be determined by two qualified health-care professionals, one of whom shall be the unemancipated minor's primary care practitioner and the other of whom shall be a health-care practitioner that works with unemancipated minors of the minor's age in the ordinary course of that health-care practitioner's practice. If the unemancipated minor lacks capacity due to mental illness or developmental disability, one of the qualified health-care professionals shall be a person whose training and expertise aid in the assessment of functional impairment.

E. If the unemancipated minor's primary care practitioner has reason to believe that a parent or guardian of an unemancipated minor, including a non-custodial parent, has not been informed of a decision to withhold or withdraw life-sustaining treatment, the primary care practitioner shall make reasonable efforts to determine if the uninformed parent or guardian has maintained substantial and continuous contact with the unemancipated minor and, if so, shall make reasonable efforts to notify that parent or guardian before implementing a decision.

F. If there is disagreement regarding the decision to withhold or withdraw life-sustaining treatment for an unemancipated minor, the provisions of Section 24-7A-11 NMSA 1978 shall apply.

History: Laws 1997, ch. 168, 13; 2009, ch. 220, 2; 2015, ch. 116, 6.

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