American and European Guidelines on Disorders of Consciousness : Ethical Challenges of Implementation

Journal of Head Trauma Rehabilitation (forthcoming)
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Abstract

The recently published Guidelines on Disorders of Consciousness by the European Academy of Neurology and by the American Academy of Neurology in collaboration with the American Congress of Rehabilitation Medicine and the National Institute on Disability, Independent Living, and Rehabilitation Research stand as the most ambitious international attempts to provide clear and standardized recommendations to clinicians working with patients with DoCs. They offer an updated, timely, and wide-ranging list of recommendations for the diagnosis, prognosis, and clinical care of affected patients. However, while commendable, the guidelines pose a number of questions including some related to the practical implementation of their recommendations. The paper introduces the Distributed Responsibility Model as a tool for maximizing the impact of recommendations in clinical practice

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