If a person doesn’t have decision-making capacity, decisions about health care or medical treatment should be made by his or her ‘next of kin’.
No. ‘Next of kin’ is an informal term commonly used to refer to a person’s immediate or close family members. The term is not recognised in the laws about decision-making for health care or medical treatment. The person who will make a health care or medical treatment decision for a person who lacks decision-making capacity is known as the person’s ‘substitute decision-maker’. Who will be the substitute decision-maker for the person will depend on the legislation in your State or Territory.