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Thread: 60,000 patients put on death pathway without being told...

  1. #91
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    Re: 60,000 patients put on death pathway without being told...

    Quote Originally Posted by lizzie View Post
    She made the decision to let him die from complications of the infection, with my full support. I have absolutely no regrets, and the decision was made based on the reality of his condition, and not with money taken into consideration.
    Two very wise and strong women, you and your mom.

    My dad's wife and I were in 100% agreement on withdrawing treatment from dad...his step-daughter and daughter (my half-sister)? Notsomuch. We prevailed after much compassionate, but realistic, discussion.

    After we made the decision, my dad's doctor took Pat and I aside and said, "I only pray to God that when my time comes, I have someone at my side to make the same tough decision you did." It meant the world to both of us.

    We'd met with a team of doctors (w/the family) and each had their take...we heard them all out -- all optimistic as all get-out. His family doctor, who knew him, said little. (The others had never met my dad...never saw his life struggles...never knew his mind.) I finally asked him, "If it were your dad, Doctor, what would you do?" He said:

    "It was my dad. Two years ago, my father spent six months in intensive care...on dialysis...one infection after another...on breathing support (which my dad was on, btw, I forgot to mention that). I wanted to end his suffering. The rest of my family did not. He lived for six months -- a horrible existence -- and then he died. If I had my way? He would have gone into hospice care shortly after he arrived. He was never going to leave the hospital."
    Last edited by MaggieD; 01-01-13 at 02:12 PM.
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  2. #92
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    Harry Guerrilla's Avatar
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    Re: 60,000 patients put on death pathway without being told...

    Quote Originally Posted by lizzie View Post
    Plus what we spend for end stage renal disease, which is not curable, and for which treatment can go for a substantial number of years.

    Medicare's high cost end stage renal disease patients
    I think that medical innovation may help reduce or greatly inflate those costs.
    We're on the cusp of building new organs for people.

    How much it will cost, remains to be seen.
    I was discovering that life just simply isn't fair and bask in the unsung glory of knowing that each obstacle overcome along the way only adds to the satisfaction in the end. Nothing great, after all, was ever accomplished by anyone sulking in his or her misery.
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  3. #93
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    Re: 60,000 patients put on death pathway without being told...

    Quote Originally Posted by lizzie View Post
    It is not killing for money. The doctor receives no compensation for letting someone die as a natural course of their disease. When my father was diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumor back in the summer of '11, we knew that there was no cure. He had 6 weeks of radiation treatments to try and slow the growth of the tumor, but his prognosis was have a maximum of 1 1/2 years to live, if that. After his radiation treatments were finished, he became critically ill due to a bacterial infection, and was admitted to the hospital. My mother knew that he would never be cured of the cancer, and the natural progression of the cancer would render him unable to speak, eat, walk, or do anything. She made the decision to let him die from complications of the infection, with my full support. I have absolutely no regrets, and the decision was made based on the reality of his condition, and not with money taken into consideration.
    That's as it should be done. With due respect for the person's autonomy and a loved one acting in his behalf.

    "The urge to save humanity is almost always a false front for the urge to rule." --HL Mencken

  4. #94
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    Re: 60,000 patients put on death pathway without being told...

    Quote Originally Posted by MaggieD View Post
    Two very wise and strong women. My dad's wife and I were in 100% agreement on withdrawing treatment from dad...his step-daughter and daughter (my half-sister)? Notsomuch. We prevailed after much compassionate, but realistic, discussion.

    After we made the decision, my dad's doctor took Pat and I aside and said, "I only pray to God that when my time comes, I have someone at my side to make the same tough decision you did." It meant the world to both of us.

    We'd met with a team of doctors (w/the family) and each had their take...we heard them all out -- all optimistic as all get-out. His family doctor, who knew him, said little. (The others had never met my dad...never saw his life struggles...never knew his mind.) I finally asked him, "If it were your dad, Doctor, what would you do?" He said:

    "It was my dad. Two years ago, my father spent six months in intensive care...on dialysis...one infection after another...on breathing support (which my dad was on, btw, I forgot to mention that). I wanted to end his suffering. The rest of my family did not. He lived for six months -- a horrible existence -- and then he died. If I had my way? He would have gone into hospice care shortly after he arrived. He was never going to leave the hospital."
    **** I fear that, as a potential patient and/or spouse of a potential patient.
    I was discovering that life just simply isn't fair and bask in the unsung glory of knowing that each obstacle overcome along the way only adds to the satisfaction in the end. Nothing great, after all, was ever accomplished by anyone sulking in his or her misery.
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  5. #95
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    Re: 60,000 patients put on death pathway without being told...

    Quote Originally Posted by LowDown View Post
    That's as it should be done. With due respect for the person's autonomy and a loved one acting in his behalf.
    I agree, but what we seem to see often, is that the loved one is acting in his own behalf, and not that of the patient. Because of the emotional bonds, they can't stand the thought of letting go, as they can't stomach the thought that they may feel responsible for the death of their loved one.
    "God is the name by which I designate all things which cross my path violently and recklessly, all things which alter my plans and intentions, and change the course of my life, for better or for worse."
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  6. #96
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    Re: 60,000 patients put on death pathway without being told...

    Quote Originally Posted by lizzie View Post
    The point is that in cases such as my father's, someone NEEDS to make these decisions, and there are many people in our society who cannot make them, based in reality. The reality is, nobody has a right to unlimited care on the taxpayer's dime. You know that I am a reality-based individual, who takes individual responsibility seriously. If a person wants unlimited care, he should be the one to pay for it- not the collective taxpayer. We simply can't afford to do it, and at some point, limits must be made, based on necessity.
    The day will probably come when we are forced into frank rationing of medical care. When that happens it should be done in accordance with a national discussion of the issues and a procedure that has broad support.

    Right now we don't have anything like that. What we have is bureaucracies that will operate without accountability that have been set up by a law that was narrowly passed along partisan lines and doesn't even have the support of a majority of the people. It's not sustainable.

    "The urge to save humanity is almost always a false front for the urge to rule." --HL Mencken

  7. #97
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    Re: 60,000 patients put on death pathway without being told...

    Quote Originally Posted by LowDown View Post
    The day will probably come when we are forced into frank rationing of medical care. When that happens it should be done in accordance with a national discussion of the issues and a procedure that has broad support.

    Right now we don't have anything like that. What we have is bureaucracies that will operate without accountability that have been set up by a law that was narrowly passed along partisan lines and doesn't even have the support of a majority of the people. It's not sustainable.
    No, it's being delayed more or less, by the doc fix.
    Medical care is going to be rationed, at least for elderly people, in the very near future.
    I was discovering that life just simply isn't fair and bask in the unsung glory of knowing that each obstacle overcome along the way only adds to the satisfaction in the end. Nothing great, after all, was ever accomplished by anyone sulking in his or her misery.
    —Adam Shepard

  8. #98
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    Re: 60,000 patients put on death pathway without being told...

    Quote Originally Posted by lizzie View Post
    I agree, but what we seem to see often, is that the loved one is acting in his own behalf, and not that of the patient. Because of the emotional bonds, they can't stand the thought of letting go, as they can't stomach the thought that they may feel responsible for the death of their loved one.
    Is that bad? They're the ones who are going to have to live with it.
    I believe half of the things I say and say half of the things I believe.

  9. #99
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    Re: 60,000 patients put on death pathway without being told...

    Quote Originally Posted by lizzie View Post
    I agree, but what we seem to see often, is that the loved one is acting in his own behalf, and not that of the patient. Because of the emotional bonds, they can't stand the thought of letting go, as they can't stomach the thought that they may feel responsible for the death of their loved one.
    I agree that this is sometimes a problem. It is the responsibility of the care givers to help the decision maker see things clearly through an open and frank discussion of the situation, and this sometimes requires repeated discussions and time for development of trust. It should be explained that what the doctors need to know is what the patient would want for himself if he were able to tell them.

    "The urge to save humanity is almost always a false front for the urge to rule." --HL Mencken

  10. #100
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    Re: 60,000 patients put on death pathway without being told...

    Quote Originally Posted by Monserrat View Post
    Is that bad? They're the ones who are going to have to live with it.
    Yes it's bad, because even though I truly feel for people loosing a loved one.
    (I lost my grandmother, whom I loved dearly, to breast cancer that spread all over, about 4 or 5 years ago.)

    There comes a time, when the person must let go and not continue to let their loved one suffer, plus cost the rest of us, to preserve a life that wants to end.
    My grandmother wanted to quit her chemo, she was miserable, but no one would let her.
    I was discovering that life just simply isn't fair and bask in the unsung glory of knowing that each obstacle overcome along the way only adds to the satisfaction in the end. Nothing great, after all, was ever accomplished by anyone sulking in his or her misery.
    —Adam Shepard

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