Supreme Court hears end-of-life case

The Supreme Court of Canada is seen Wednesday Dec 22, 2010 in Ottawa. (ANDRE FORGET/QMI AGENCY)

The Supreme Court of Canada is seen Wednesday Dec 22, 2010 in Ottawa. (ANDRE FORGET/QMI AGENCY)

Jessica Murphy, Parliamentary Bureau

, Last Updated: 3:23 PM ET

OTTAWA - Canada's top court is weighing who has the last word on whether to pull the plug on a patient on life-support — the doctors or the family.

On Monday, the Supreme Court heard arguments in the case of Hassan Rasouli, an Iranian immigrant who fell into a coma in 2010 after contracting an infection following minor brain surgery. He needs a ventilator to survive.

His doctors deemed him to be in a "persistent vegetative state" with no hope of recovery and are seeking to end life-support. Rasouli's wife, a physician herself and acting as his substitute decision-maker, disagrees. She went to court to stop the doctors from withdrawing treatment.


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