Blog Posts (10)
May 15, 2013
The Vermont legislature has passed a new physician-assisted suicide law and is sending it to Governor Shumlin, who supports it and is expected to sign. The Oregon-style legislation will be the third such state law in the country and the first adopted b...
February 7, 2013
This year’s first issue of
AJOB Neuroscience includes:
COGNITIVE ENHANCEMENT AND EMOTION
RECONSIDERING DEEP BRAIN STIMULATION
MINIMALLY CONSCIOUS AND END-OF-LIFE CARE…
February 6, 2013
Joan Teno and her coauthors' analyzed the Medicare fee-for-service records of more than 840,000
people aged 66 or older who died in 2000, 2005, or 2009. They looked at
where seniors died, what medical services were provided during their las...
January 30, 2013
Maurice Bernstein, M.D.
Coming to the decision that a treatment is futile—meaning that further medical treatment would have no useful result and should not be started or continued—is a decision made with hesitation or at times not at all, either by the patient or family or, unfortunately, even by the physician.…
January 10, 2013
About a year ago, 19-year-old daughter, Danielle Zfat was diagnosed with a brain tumor. On Nov. 25th she was admitted to Joe DiMaggio Children's Hospital in Florida. On Jan. 1st her condition worsened and she was placed on life support.&nb...
January 9, 2013
The following is an essay by Marc Newhouse on his mother's use of VSED. Marc Newhouse is a former cellist, nurse, and English teacher. He is now a book author who blogs at Life, Death and Iguanas.
In April of 2010, my...
January 8, 2013
With Melinda Hexum, I just published "Legal Briefing: POLST: Physician Orders for Life-Sustaining Treatment." in The Journal of Clinical Ethics 23, no. 4 (Winter 2012): 353-76. Here is the abstract:
This issue’s “Legal Briefing” colu...
January 2, 2013
On Tuesday, Feb 5, from noon to 1:00 PM, Children’s Mercy Bioethics Center is hosting a webinar on the topic: "Does the Concept of 'Medical Futility' Help Clinicians?"
Robert D. Truog, MD, Professor of...
May 2, 2013 3:56 pm
Richard Flora, 76, was bitten by an Eastern Diamondback Rattlesnake but the family decided not to give him anti-venom and he died at hospital 11 hours later.
March 21, 2013 2:41 pm
Finding out what dying patients want and treating them accordingly leads to happier patients who are in less pain and who use fewer healthcare dollars, UCLA researchers said Tuesday.
March 6, 2013 3:08 pm
By now you know the story—or at least think you do: A nursing home nurse sees an 87-year-old resident in cardiac arrest and calls 911. Despite desperate pleas of the call center operator, the nurse refuses to do CPR and the resident dies. Except most of the story isn’t true.
March 4, 2013 2:18 pm
Last week, 87-year-old Lorraine Bayless collapsed at Glenwood Gardens, an assisted living facility in Bakersfield, Calif., and later died. While it’s not unexpected that an elderly person would die, what’s troubling is that after she collapsed, a nurse called 911, yet wouldn’t administer CPR or look for someone else to do it, despite the request of the emergency dispatcher.
February 27, 2013 5:53 pm
Two Bay Area News Group journalists have won a first-place national award for their yearlong series “Cost of Dying.” Science writer Lisa Krieger and photojournalist Dai Sugano won the top prize for their work detailing how harsh the end-of-life experience can be.
February 12, 2013 12:17 pm
Good grief! The state with the worst futile care law in the nation now has legislation pending that would enable doctors to place DNR (Do Not Resuscitate) orders on a patient’s chart without notice or permission — even if the patient is competent!
February 6, 2013 3:51 pm
Twice as many elderly people died in hospice care as in a hospital or nursing home compared with a decade ago, but hospice is often treated as a last resort — and used too late to benefit patients and their families, says a study.
January 24, 2013 12:54 pm
Japanese finance minister Taro Aso told a social security council that the elderly should be allowed to “hurry up and die” rather than drain the resources of the government.
May 17, 2012 9:38 am
A patient in a nursing home or hospital is increasingly likely to be asked to sign a form with a benign-sounding name: Physician’s Order for Life-Sustaining Treatment. A brightly colored document that is one page, printed on both sides, with boxes to be checked off regarding medical treatment — or the withholding of treatment — the Physician’s Order for Life-Sustaining Treatment (Polst), in an instrument for dealing with end-of-life decisions if the patient is incapacitated.