We always try to provide
excellent presenters at our yearly conferences
and this year was certainly no exception. Our
presenters who spoke on the changes in hospice
were excellent---and timely.
I don't know if any of you
have noticed the increase in articles and
reports on euthanasia and doctor assisted
suicide that I have, but it is beginning to
concern me. The problem is that most of the
reporting is leaning toward approval of these
While I have never approved
of active or passive euthanasia or doctor
assisted suicide I have always found these
topics more difficult to debate, probably due
to the fact that the person deciding to do
these things was taking action against
him/herself and not an innocent, silent, third
party--a child-- as with abortion.
Well, the argument is
changing. There is more and more emphasis
being placed on mandatory end of life
documents, expense of treatment, burden to
others, uselessness and how the good of
society might be better served if those
suffering lingering illnesses were "helped"
out of existence. One of our states has
actually refused to pay for life extending
treatment but offered to provide life ending
drugs at no cost.
I am not sure what is
driving this more overt message to end life
but I am one of the few people in our country
who has actually read almost every page of the
Affordable Care Act and I can assure you that
while the name does not exist, "death panels"
are contained within the language. We must be
aware of what is happening and be prepared to
Life is precious, a gift,
and has value regardless of age, stage of
development or condition of dependency. We are
charged to protect it, treat with compassion
and relieve suffering. It is not ours to end
either by omission or commission.
Diane Trombley , RN,