Clinically assisted nutrition and hydration (CANH) Guidance - British Medical Association (BMA)

Guidance to support doctors making decisions about clinically assisted nutrition and hydration (CANH) for adults who lack capacity in England and Wales.

Last reviewed
  • Anticipatory / advanced care
Resource type
  • Publications
  • Dietitian
  • Doctor (Geriatrician)
  • Doctor (GP)
  • Doctor (Neurologist)
  • Doctor (Other)
  • Nurse (Parkinson's nurse)
  • Complex

Clinically-assisted nutrition and hydration (CANH) and adults who lack the capacity to consent Guidance for decision-making in England and Wales is a joint publication from the BMA and the Royal College of Physicians (RCP). It has also been endorsed by the General Medical Council and a number of professional bodies.

The guidance was produced with assistance from a wide-ranging multi-disciplinary consultative groups with senior clinicians, lawyers, health professionals and relevant organisations (see list at the front of the guidance document itself). It is consistent with the law in England and Wales and represents these groups' view of best practice.

Overview of guidance topics:

  • The decision-making process
  • Best interests decision-making
  • Training materials
  • Information for healthcare providers, funders and manager
  • Information leaflet for families

The BMA is the voice of doctors and medical students in the UK. They are a professional organisation and independent trade union, representing doctors and medical students from all branches of medicine across the UK and supporting them to deliver the highest standards of care.