Tuesday, June 17, 2008

More on Samuel Golubchuk

I was interviewed today by CBC radio in Manitoba concerning the Golubchuk case in Winnipeg.

It appears that the doctors are intentionally pressuring the system into a crisis in order to get their way and stop providing treatment for Samuel Golubchuk.

We need to remember that Samuel Golubchuk is an orthodox Jewish man. His family is defending their faith position by asking that nothing be done that would result in his death. I may not make the same treatment decisions as the Golubchuks but I respect the family's right to defend their father's wishes and his faith position.

Further to the issue of the physicians intentionally pressuring the system to reject treatment for Samuel Golubchuk, the legal system clearly gives the institution the advantage. Grace Hospital has hired, at taxpayers' expense, the best legal team in Manitoba to represent their position while the Golubchuk family are left to their own limited resources to protect the values of their father. Clearly, the system leans heavily towards supporting the hospital's agenda.

I am concerned that it is not possible to have a fair legal trial when the hospital has such legal advantages.

I am also very dissappointed with the fact that Grace Hospital has not provided a mediator for this dispute. Communication between Grace Hospital and the family has broken down. It is likely that other decisions may be possible if the family and the hospital could communicate in a non-confrontational manner.

It is also too bad that the physicians and Grace Hospital continue to refuse to respect the orthodox Jewish faith perspective of the Golubchuk family. The circumstances of this case are not common and require a special sensitivity to solve.

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