Lawmakers in Minnesota are taking aim at Hospital’s “end of life care” or lack-there-of with Senate File 2238. This is an important bill as more and more evidence makes it increasingly clear that hospitals are moving away from the Hippocratic Oath and towards a Darwinian survival of the fittest method of caring for the disabled
Many hospitals have so-called “medical futility” policies regarding treatment for severely disabled newborns. A state Senate committee will hear testimony on a bill Friday morning that would require all hospitals to post and explain their policies with parents of minor children who are patients. It would also require hospitals to register those policies with the Department of Health..
Mary Kellett, a mother of a recently deceased child, Peter will be testifying at the committee hearing. She will be sharing how Peter, who had Trisomy 18, or Edwards syndrome – a condition similar to, but more severe than, Down Syndrome, suffered from discrimination while being cared for at the Hospital.
Once Peter was diagnosed with Trisomy 18 shortly after his birth, Hospital staff recommended to Mary to, “stop all treatment, wrap him up in a blanket and let him die.”
Soon after that, a female doctor confided to Mary that if she wanted to be a good mother to her other children, she, “had to let Peter go because he would be a burden to our whole family.”
When I hear stories like this, sometimes I need to remind myself that I am living in the 21st century America and not in the 1930’s Nazi Germany.
You can read more about Mary’s story by clicking here. At the end of the news story there are a number of facebook comments, many of them sharing gut-wrenching testimonies from parents of how their hosptial discriminated against their disabled child.
As I write this I am reminded that yesterday was World Down Syndrome Day. Did you know that a child in-utero who has been diagnosed with Down Syndrome has a 10% survival rate (90% are aborted)? This doesn’t mean Down Syndrome children, but any child who is diagnosed with this genetic disability.
I hope Mary and her son’s story highlights the importance of our work in the medical community and how important it is that we grow Medical Students for Life and eventually replace the anti-life mentality that has taken over so many U.S. Hospitals.
Because of Peter, Mary Kellett has founded and is the director of Prenatal Partners for Life, an organization which helps parents cope with a poor prenatal diagnosis like down syndrome. There is a page on her site that is designed to give guidance to medical professionals who are working with parents and patients who have been diagnosed with prenatal disabilities. Mary is also available to speak at any medical school. If you would like to host her, just let MedSFLA know!
Thanks for all that you do for LIFE,