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Competing interests None.
Provenance and peer review Commissioned; externally peer reviewed. This paper was reviewed by Adam Zeman, Exeter, UK.
Relevant interests I was a co-chair on the recent Royal College of Physicians Working party that drew up the Third Edition of Guidelines. I have undertaken and continue to undertake medico-legal assessments and reports on people with prolonged disorders of consciousness, including reports on patients whose cases are going to court for permission to withdraw Clinically Assisted Nutrition and Hydration. My NHS Trust admits such patients for assessment and management.