Human Exceptionalism

Sedated to Death Without Permission in UK

Patients are not individuals in centralized healthcare systems. Rather, they become members of checklist categories on bureaucratic check lists. How else explain doctors putting nearly one-half of patients on the Liverpool Care Pathway sedation/dehydration protocol–in which patients are put in comas and denied sustenance–without bothering to tell patients of families.  In other words, patients are being sedated sometimes to death without permission.  From the Telegraph story:

Almost half of dying patients placed on the controversial Liverpool Care Pathway are never told that life-saving treatment has been withdrawn, a national audit has found…The new disclosures demonstrate just how routinely hospitals are placing patients on the pathway without informing them that steps which could hasten their death have been taken. The national audit found:

• In 44 per cent of cases when conscious patients were placed on the pathway, there was no record that the decision had been discussed with them.

• For 22 per cent of patients on the pathway, there was no evidence that comfort and safety had been maintained while medication was administered.

• One in three families of the dying never received a leaflet they should have been given to explain the process.

Critics of the pathway – which can involve the withdrawal of drugs, fluids and food, and the administration of powerful pain relief – say it is being used to hasten the deaths of the terminally-ill and elderly, in a form of “back-door euthanasia”.

Not just “powerful pain relief.” Usually, sedated into unconsciousness.

I am certainly not saying people should be hooked up to machines until they die. I am saying that when the time has come to stop trying to sustain life, it should be the patient or family’s choice, not the doctor’s. Moreover, sedation should only be used when necessary, not as a matter of routine, because dying isn’t dead.  People have a right to that time with loved one and families.  This is Futile Care Theory imposed on a massive scale.

Obamacare’s centralized control will lead to the same types of travesty we see in the NHS.  When technocrats rule medicine, the most vulnerable (and expensive) patients pay the price.

Most Popular

Politics & Policy

ABC Chief Political Analyst: GOP Rep. Stefanik a ‘Perfect Example’ of the Failures of Electing Someone ‘Because They Are a Woman’

Matthew Dowd, chief political analyst for ABC News, suggested that Representative Elise Stefanik (R., N.Y.) was elected due to her gender after taking issue with Stefanik's line of questioning during the first public impeachment hearing on Wednesday. “Elise Stefanik is a perfect example of why just electing ... Read More
White House

Trump vs. the ‘Policy Community’

When it comes to Russia, I am with what Lieutenant Colonel Alexander Vindman calls the American “policy community.” Vindman, of course, is one of the House Democrats’ star impeachment witnesses. His haughtiness in proclaiming the policy community and his membership in it grates, throughout his 340-page ... Read More
Law & the Courts

DACA’s Day in Court

When President Obama unilaterally changed immigration policy after repeatedly and correctly insisting that he lacked the constitutional power to do it, he said that congressional inaction had forced his hand. In the case of his first major unilateral move — “Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals,” which ... Read More
Books

A Preposterous Review

A   Georgetown University professor named Charles King has reviewed my new book The Case for Nationalism for Foreign Affairs, and his review is a train wreck. It is worth dwelling on, not only because the review contains most of the lines of attack against my book, but because it is extraordinarily shoddy and ... Read More