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King's College London Centre for Medical Law and Ethics Persistent Vegetative State Records

Identity Statement

Reference code(s): GB 0100 KCLCA 1996/KFLE
Held at: King's College London College Archives
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Full title: King's College London Centre for Medical Law and Ethics Persistent Vegetative State Records
Date(s): 1981-1996
Level of description: Sub-fonds of King's College London Archives
Extent: 31.5 boxes
Name of creator(s): King's College London | Centre for Medical Law and Ethics


Administrative/Biographical history:

The Centre, part of the School of Law, was opened in 1978 to undertake research, organise teaching and publish papers concerning issues in medicine involving law and ethics. It draws on the expertise of staff in numerous schools and departments including medicine and theology and offers undergraduate course units and an MA and Diploma programme. The ECBIOMED-1 Project into Persistent Vegetative State was funded by the European Commission under the auspices of their European Biomedical Health Record Programme. Work commenced in 1994 and was co-ordinated by the Centre under the Directorship of Professor Andrew Grubb. It constituted a comparative survey undertaken in eight European countries of the opinions of doctors and health care professionals with experience of patients suffering from trauma of the brain.


Scope and content/abstract:

The records of the Persistent Vegetative State Project at King's College London consists of completed questionnaires, correspondence, off-prints of journals and printed reports, 1981-1996. The records comprise approximately 3500 completed questionnaires by doctors in the United Kingdom, Poland, Belgium, Greece, Holland and Ireland covering issues including treatment for infections and the withdrawal of feeding to patients, 1994-1996; computer print-outs of statistics based upon the findings of the questionnaires, 1994-1996; correspondence by doctors participating in a pilot study to gauge the views of neurologists on the design and content of the final draft of the programme questionnaire, 1994; printed conclusions including annual reports and the proceedings of international conferences on Persistent Vegetative State, 1995-1996; off-prints of journals and law reports on medical ethics especially in relation to traumatic brain injury, mainly the Medical law review, Law, medicine and health care and the New England journal of medicine, 1981-1995.

Access & Use

Language/scripts of material:

System of arrangement:

Questionnaires are boxed according to the country of origin of respondents.

Conditions governing access:

Administrative records are generally closed for 30 years except for published material and some committee and other minutes. Staff and student records are subject to an 80 year closure period after the date of leaving, but may be consulted by Departmental and other College staff with permission from the Head of Department.

Conditions governing reproduction:

Copies, subject to the condition of the original, may be supplied for research use only. Requests to publish original material should be submitted to the Director of Archive Services.

Finding aids:

Archival Information

Archival history:

Immediate source of acquisition:

Papers received from the Centre for Medical Law and Ethics.

Allied Materials

Related material:

King's College London Archives: Centre for Medical Law and Ethics postgraduate student files, 1985-1986 (KCLCA KFLE/FPPG); annual prospectuses for the Centre (KCLCA KFL/SYL 1-2); records of the Living Wills Project based in the Centre (Ref: KCLCA 1996/KFLE).

Publication note:

The moral and legal issues surrounding the treatment and care of patients in Persistent Vegetative State (London, 1996).

Description Notes

Archivist's note:
Entry compiled by Geoff Browell

Rules or conventions:
Compiled in compliance with General International Standard Archival Description, ISAD(G), second edition, 2000; National Council on Archives Rules for the Construction of Personal, Place and Corporate Names, 1997.

Date(s) of descriptions:
January 2002

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