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05/22/2017

Christian Schools and Pregnancy

The New York Times published an article over the weekend titled “Pregnant at 18. Hailed by Abortion Foes. Punished by Christian School.” The author of the piece tells the story of Maddi Runkles, an 18-year-old high school senior who was banned from participating in her school’s graduation ceremony and removed from the student council after becoming pregnant earlier this year.  The article juxtaposes the professed... // Read More »

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This entry was posted in Health Care and tagged , . Posted by Janie Valentine. Bookmark the permalink.

05/22/2017

Unwanted Treatment Case Going to Trial – Alicea v. Augusta Doctors Hospital

Bucilla Stephenson
I recently published a summary of new lawsuits against healthcare providers who administered end-of-life treatment contrary to patient wishes.  

This 2017 article updated my 2013 comprehensive legal review of unwanted end-of-life treatment.  Some of these cases were profiled last month in the New York Times. One is now heading to a jury trial on June 12. 

The case, Alicea v. Augusta Doctors Hospital, already reached the Supreme Court of Georgia, last year, on a question of immunity.  The court issued a strong decision on the duty to honor advance directives.  "A clear objective of the Act is to ensure that . . . it is the will of the patient or her designated agent, and not the will of the health care provider, that controls."

Bucilla Stephenson did it right.  She completed an advance directive with clear and specific instructions.  And she appointed a faithful and diligent agent.  But all this was not enough.

Contrary to her wishes, the attending physician had Bucilla intubated and put on a ventilator.  The nurses urged the physician to call the agent.  But the physician refused.

The plaintiff is seeking the $200,000 in medical expenses charged after the March 7, 2012, intubation, punitive damages, and attorneys’ fees.

Full Article

This entry was posted in Health Care and tagged . Posted by Thaddeus Mason Pope, JD, PhD. Bookmark the permalink.

05/22/2017

Unwanted Treatment Case Going to Trial – Alicea v. Augusta Doctors Hospital

Bucilla Stephenson
I recently published a summary of new lawsuits against healthcare providers who administered end-of-life treatment contrary to patient wishes.  

This 2017 article updated my 2013 comprehensive legal review of unwanted end-of-life treatment.  Some of these cases were profiled last month in the New York Times. One is now heading to a jury trial on June 12. 

The case, Alicea v. Augusta Doctors Hospital, already reached the Supreme Court of Georgia, last year, on a question of immunity.  The court issued a strong decision on the duty to honor advance directives.  "A clear objective of the Act is to ensure that . . . it is the will of the patient or her designated agent, and not the will of the health care provider, that controls."

Bucilla Stephenson did it right.  She completed an advance directive with clear and specific instructions.  And she appointed a faithful and diligent agent.  But all this was not enough.

Contrary to her wishes, the attending physician had Bucilla intubated and put on a ventilator.  The nurses urged the physician to call the agent.  But the physician refused.

The plaintiff is seeking the $200,000 in medical expenses charged after the March 7, 2012, intubation, punitive damages, and attorneys’ fees.

Full Article

This entry was posted in Health Care and tagged . Posted by Thaddeus Mason Pope, JD, PhD. Bookmark the permalink.

05/20/2017

Why Doctors Treat the Dying, Even When They Know It’s Futile

If a patient is dying, and you know treatment won't help, do you still treat anyway? Professor Lindy Willmott, from the Australian Centre for Health Law Research, set out to discover why most doctors still do. She reported research results at the&nbsp...

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This entry was posted in Health Care and tagged . Posted by Thaddeus Mason Pope, JD, PhD. Bookmark the permalink.

05/20/2017

Why Doctors Treat the Dying, Even When They Know It’s Futile

If a patient is dying, and you know treatment won't help, do you still treat anyway? Professor Lindy Willmott, from the Australian Centre for Health Law Research, set out to discover why most doctors still do. She reported research results at the&nbsp...

Full Article

This entry was posted in Health Care and tagged . Posted by Thaddeus Mason Pope, JD, PhD. Bookmark the permalink.

05/19/2017

A Time to Live (film)

What would you do if you were told you had a terminal illness and may only have months to live? Award-winning film-maker Sue Bourne wanted to make a film about living, not dying. She set out to find people of all ages who had managed to find positives...

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This entry was posted in Health Care and tagged . Posted by Thaddeus Mason Pope, JD, PhD. Bookmark the permalink.

05/19/2017

A Time to Live (film)

What would you do if you were told you had a terminal illness and may only have months to live? Award-winning film-maker Sue Bourne wanted to make a film about living, not dying. She set out to find people of all ages who had managed to find positives...

Full Article

This entry was posted in Health Care and tagged . Posted by Thaddeus Mason Pope, JD, PhD. Bookmark the permalink.

05/19/2017

Mailbag

Brief comments on four short articles from this week, on disparate topics: James Capretta of the American Enterprise Institute (meaning he is politically right of center) pleads in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) for compromise between Republicans and Democrats on further healthcare policy reform.  Arguing that the House-passed American Health Care Act (AHCA) may never pass, he believes that a better result... // Read More »

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05/18/2017

1 in 7 Americans Want Caregivers to Do "Whatever It Takes to Be Kept Alive"

The Massachusetts Coalition for Serious Illness Care has published the second in its annual series of surveys measuring Massachusetts residents’ views on serious illness and end-of-life care.

Consistent with Pew and at least a half-dozen other surveys, around 1 in 7 report that they want caregivers to do "whatever it takes to be kept alive."

Because this 14% is a percentage is substantially higher than that reported acceptable by clinicians, US hospitals will continue to have a significant rate of medical futility conflicts. 

Full Article

This entry was posted in Health Care and tagged . Posted by Thaddeus Mason Pope, JD, PhD. Bookmark the permalink.

05/18/2017

1 in 7 Americans Want Caregivers to Do "Whatever It Takes to Be Kept Alive"

The Massachusetts Coalition for Serious Illness Care has published the second in its annual series of surveys measuring Massachusetts residents’ views on serious illness and end-of-life care.

Consistent with Pew and at least a half-dozen other surveys, around 1 in 7 report that they want caregivers to do "whatever it takes to be kept alive."

Because this 14% is a percentage is substantially higher than that reported acceptable by clinicians, US hospitals will continue to have a significant rate of medical futility conflicts. 

Full Article

This entry was posted in Health Care and tagged . Posted by Thaddeus Mason Pope, JD, PhD. Bookmark the permalink.