In re Baby K
United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit
16 F.3d 590 (1994)
Baby K was born with anencephaly, a condition resulting in severe breathing difficulty, respiratory failure, and death. Because aggressive treatment would serve no beneficial purpose, physicians recommended to the infant’s mother, Ms. H, that Baby K only be given nutrition, hydration, and warmth. Ms. H refused and demanded that Baby K be provided with aggressive treatment any time she experienced difficulty breathing. Thereafter, the hospital unsuccessfully sought to transfer Baby K to another facility willing to provide the requested treatment. Approximately 30 days after birth, Baby K was stable enough to be transferred to a nursing home. Since being transferred, however, Baby K had to be readmitted to the hospital due to breathing difficulties. Each time the hospital provided stabilization treatment to Baby K she was then transferred back to the nursing home. After Baby K’s second admission, the hospital filed an action against Ms. H, the father Mr. K, and Baby K seeking a declaratory judgment that it should not be required to provide emergency medical treatment that it deems to be ethically inappropriate pursuant to the Emergency Medical Treatment and Active Labor Act (EMTALA). Baby K’s court appointed guardian and Mr. K joined in the hospital’s request. The district court denied the relief requested and the hospital appealed.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Wilkins, J.)
Dissent (Sprouse, J.)
What to do next…
Unlock this case brief with a free (no-commitment) trial membership of Quimbee.
You’ll be in good company: Quimbee is one of the most widely used and trusted sites for law students, serving more than 97,000 law students since 2011. Some law schools—such as Yale, Vanderbilt, Berkeley, and the University of Illinois—even subscribe directly to Quimbee for all their law students. Read our student testimonials.
Learn more about Quimbee’s unique (and proven) approach to achieving great grades at law school.
Quimbee is a company hell-bent on one thing: helping you get an “A” in every course you take in law school, so you can graduate at the top of your class and get a high-paying law job. We’re not just a study aid for law students; we’re the study aid for law students. Read more about Quimbee.
Here's why 166,000 law students have relied on our case briefs:
- Written by law professors and practitioners, not other law students. 13,800 briefs, keyed to 187 casebooks. Top-notch customer support.
- The right amount of information, includes the facts, issues, rule of law, holding and reasoning, and any concurrences and dissents.
- Access in your classes, works on your mobile and tablet. Massive library of related video lessons and high quality multiple-choice questions.
- Easy to use, uniform format for every case brief. Written in plain English, not in legalese. Our briefs summarize and simplify; they don’t just repeat the court’s language.