Croatia is a transitional society in that it is a country emerging from a socialist command economy toward a market-based economy with ensuing structural changes of a social and political naturesome extending into the healthcare system. A legacy from our past is that, until now, Croatian healthcare institutions have had no real experience with clinical ethics support services. When clinical cases arise presenting complex ethical dilemmas in treatment options, the challenges presented to the medical team are substantial. The case described below recently occurred on a ward in a university hospital in Croatia. An unexpected request from the patients parents created a number of issues that needed to be addressed by the medical team, which was made more difficult by the lack of clinical ethics support services. Such cases press the question currently being debated as to what type of ethics support services would be suitable for Croatia and why. Copyright © Cambridge University Press 2010.