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The National Catholic Bioethics Quarterly

Volume 21, Issue 3, Autumn 2021

Christopher Tollefsen
Pages 441-451

Intention, Vocation, and Nutrition at the End of Life

In this essay, I discuss the role that vocation plays in assessing the proportion of burdens to benefits in end-of-life options. I then look at the case of patients in a persistent vegetative state. What vocational considerations are relevant for persons considering what care to accept should they ever be in a PVS or for those caring for patients in such a state? Ultimately, I argue that the vocational shape of a patient’s life ought not to be a consideration for a caregiver in favor of removing artificial nutrition and hydration.