Can a civil court compel a terminally-ill adult to receive potentially life-saving medical treatment despite her rejection of such treatment in favor of faith healing?
No, said the Ohio Supreme Court in an important ruling. Noting that faith healing is a form of religious belief, the court concluded that "the state may not compel a legally competent adult to submit to medical treatment which would violate that individual's religious beliefs even though the treatment is arguably life-extending." This is so no matter how "unwise, foolish, or ridiculous" those beliefs may seem to others. In re Milton, 505 N.E.2d 255 (Ohio 1987).