Elders’ Refusals to Eat: What’s a Caregiver to Do?

First, Do No Harm

One need not be a doctor to adhere to the “”first do no harm”” clause of the Hippocratic Oath. It would be negligent, irresponsible, and may have criminal implications, if a caregiver were to allow a family member to starve to death. Therefore, the short and simplest answer to the question often posed by caregivers is that there is a point where elders who refuse to eat need prompt medical intervention. Seek medical intervention long before the situation gets out of hand.

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