Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Catholic Bishops Enact Plan For “300,000 Terri Schiavos”

For fuck's sake, people.

The US Conference of Catholic Bishops released an "Ethical and Religious Directive" this month that would ban any Catholic hospital, nursing home or hospice program from removing feeding tubes or ending palliative procedures of any kind, even when the individual has an advance directive to guide their end-of-life care. The Bishops' directive even notes that patient suffering is redemptive and brings the individual closer to Christ. (...)

A 60Minutes piece this weekend looked at the cost of dying in America, showing that Medicare paid $50 billion in the last two months of patients' lives in 2008. Compassion & Choices focuses on the suffering at the end of life, not federal dollars, but they agree in general with the portrait shown by 60 Minutes. Incredibly, suffering is one of the selling points in the Catholic Bishops' directive. "It's quite specific about the role of suffering in Christian dogma," Coombs Lee explained. "It says that suffering is redemptive, that it's part of Christ's passion. So they are pretty clear on their concern for the suffering of the patient."
I don't need to say any of the things I'm thinking. You already know what they are.

(ht unusualmusic for this gem)

1 comment:

Makarios said...

"Even if the family can produce an advance directive or living will, Catholic hospitals and nursing homes would be expected to maintain the feeding tubes."

I don't know about where you live, but where I come from, this would be criminal assault.