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Identity statement

Reference code(s)
KING'S COLLEGE LONDON: Centre for Medical Law and Ethics living wills project
Level of description
Series of sub-Fonds of King's College London Centre for Medical Law and Ethics Records
Extent and medium of the unit of description (quantity, bulk, or size)
3 boxes or 0.03 cubic metres


Name of creator(s)

King's College London Centre for Medical Law and Ethics

Administrative / Biographical history

The Centre for Medical Law and Ethics, 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 Living Wills Working Party was set up between the Centre and the charity, Age Concern, in 1985, as an early exercise in methodological appraisal of the subject and comprised a forerunner to the Living Wills Project run by the Centre and the AIDS charity, the Terrence Higgins Trust, to measure and evaluate the demand for advanced legal directives and powers of attorney pertaining to medical treatment of terminally or chronically-ill patients.

Immediate source of acquisition or transfer

Transferred to the Archives from the Centre in 1996 and 1998.

Content & structure

Scope and content

Records of the Living Wills Working Group and Living Wills Project at The Centre of Medical Law and Ethics at King's College London, 1985-1992. The papers of the Living Wills Working Party, 1985-1989, including correspondence of the Working Party and opinions of other organisations on the development of the report, 1985-1989; unbound copy of the final Living Wills Working Party report, 1988. Papers of the Living Wills Project, 1990-1992, including agendas and minutes of meetings, 1991-1992; thesis by Charlotta Schlyter 'AIDS and Aid-in-Dying the Impact of AIDS on the Debate Over Euthanasia, Assisted Suicide and Cessation of Treatment', 1990; papers regarding the development of the questionnaires, 1991-1992; correspondence with AIDS agencies, medical professionals, and other regarding the development and distribution of questionnaires, 1991-1992; completed questionnaires and analysis of the data gathered during the Project,1991-1992.

System of arrangement

The collection has been arranged into the categories above.

Conditions of access & use

Conditions governing access

Records relating to individuals are subject to the Data Protection Act, and are closed for 80 years from the last date in the file. They may be consulted by Centre for Medical Law and Ethics staff with permission from the Head of Department. Access may be granted to researchers in certain circumstances, and upon signature of a special undertaking, providing such research if for purely statistical purposes and published data is anonymised such as to prevent the identification of individuals.

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

Language/scripts of material


Finding aids

The catalogue is available on-line and in hard copy in the Archive reading room.

Allied materials

Existence and location of originals

King's College London College Archives

Related units of description

King's College London Archives: Centre for Medical Law and Ethics postgraduate student files, 1985-1986 (Ref: KCLCA KFLE/FPPG); Financial records of the Centre, (Ref. KCLA 1998/KFLE); annual prospectuses for the Centre (Ref: KCLCA KFL/SYL 1-2); records of the Persistent Vegetative State (PVS) Project (Ref: KCLCA KFLE/PVS).

Description control

Archivist's Note

Entry compiled by Geoff Browell. Updated by Katie Mooney when the collection was catalogued.

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.

This catalogue is made available under the Open Data Commons Attribution License. This catalogue may be updated from time to time in order to reflect additional material and/or new understandings of the material.

Date(s) of descriptions

August 2001; updated December 2005.


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Detailed catalogue

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  • AIDS
  • Civil and political rights
  • Diseases
  • Documents
  • Euthanasia
  • Health and welfare legislation
  • Human rights
  • Infectious diseases
  • Information sources
  • Law
  • Legislation
  • Living wills
  • Medical ethics
  • Medical legislation
  • Medical profession
  • Medical sciences
  • Pathology
  • Primary documents
  • Right to life
  • Venereal diseases
  • Wills

Corporate names

  • King's College London College Archives
  • King's College London, Centre for Medical Law and Ethics

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