Healthcare Resource Allocation in the English courts: a systems theory perspective

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Engagement with sociological perspectives can enrich an understanding of medical law and provide a basis for critique of certain of its key premises. Since both law and healthcare are frequently conceptualised and analysed as systems, the theoretical frameworks developed by Niklas Luhmann and Gunther Teubner would seem to offer particular promise in this regard. This article explores a particular area of medical law to which an understanding of the social (and political-economic) context of decision-making is of clear importance – adjudication upon the allocation of scarce resources – in order to identify what insights may be gained from an approach grounded in systems theory.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)111-129
Number of pages20
JournalNorthern Ireland Legal Quarterly
Issue number1
Early online date8 Mar 2019
Publication statusPublished - 8 Mar 2019

Structured keywords

  • LAW Centre for Health Law and Society


  • judicial review
  • healthcare
  • resource allocation
  • systems theory


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