The Surrogate Decision-Making Committee (SDMC) program is an alternative to the court system and is authorized to provide consent for non-emergency major medical treatment and end-of-life care decisions for people who qualify. Our program consists of Volunteer panels who make the decision, providing for quicker, more accessible, cost-free, and personalized decision on behalf of individuals with disabilities. 

If you would like to learn more about the medical decisions that are covered under SDMC, eligibility criteria, and which forms to complete when requesting a decision, please review the SDMC Services Video.

What decisions can be made?

Medical, surgical, dental, or diagnostic interventions or procedures which involve:

  • The use of a general anesthetic
  • Any significant invasion of bodily integrity requiring an incision or producing substantial pain, discomfort, debilitation, or having a significant recovery period
  • Significant risk (e.g., colonoscopies, endoscopies, MRIs, CT Scans with contrast)
  • Chemotherapy
  • Hospice
  • Withdrawal or withholding of life sustaining treatment for persons with an intellectual or developmental disability
  • Any other treatment or procedure for which informed consent is required by law


What treatment is excluded by law from the SDMC program?

  • Routine diagnosis or treatment including the administration of routine medications
  • Dental care performed under a local anesthetic
  • Emergency medical treatment
  • Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT)
  • Withdrawal or discontinuation of life-sustaining medical treatment except as provided in the Health Care Decisions Act for persons with an intellectual or developmental disability
  • Sterilization
  • Termination of pregnancy

Go to the Justice Center website for more information.