Wednesday, April 1, 2020

Assisted suicide by telehealth and medical misdiagnosis.

Alex Schadenberg
Executive Director - Euthanasia Prevention Coalition


*Sign the petition: Healthcare regulations must not permit assisted suicide approvals by telehealth (Link).


On March 20 I reported that the assisted suicide lobby was using the Covid-19 crisis to promote approving assisted suicide by telehealth

This is not a new plan. The 2019 New Mexico assisted suicide bill included a telehealth provision and the recent bill to expand assisted suicide in Hawaii included a telehealth provision.

On March 26 I reported that the association of death doctors were also using the Covid-19 crisis to promote "aid-in-dying" by telehealth


On March 26, the assisted suicide lobby group that urged governments to allow assisted suicide by telehealth thanked Congressional leaders for expanding access to telehealth during the Coronavirus crisis.



I understand the need to expand telehealth services during the Covid-19 crisis but assisted suicide is not medical treatment

The online medical dictionary defines treatment as: the management and care of a patient, the combating of a disease or disorder. Assisted suicide does not manage or combat a disease or disorder and it is not about providing care.

Let's think this through. A person with difficult health issues who feels like a burden on others, or is experiencing depression or existential distress, could be assessed, approved and prescribed a lethal drug cocktail for suicide by telehealth.
 
Further to that, if you consider the amount of medical misdiagnosis, is it reasonable to give a physician the right to prescribe a lethal drug cocktail without examining the patient to confirm the medical diagnosis?

Let's examine this further.

 

According to Brian Mastroianni who was published by healthline.com on February 22, medical misdiagnosis is more common than you think. According to the data:
Mya DeRyan
In October 2016 Mya DeRyan survived a suicide attempt. While recovering DeRyan learned that the terminal diagnosis that she was trying to escape from was in fact a wrong diagnosis.


In April 2013, Pietro D’Amico, a 62-year-old magistrate from Calabria Italy, died by assisted suicide at a Swiss assisted suicide clinic. His autopsy found that he was misdiagnosed.

Considering the data, it is irresponsible for a physician to prescribe a lethal drug cocktail, upon request, without examining the person and ensuring that the person has an accurate diagnosis.

It is unlikely that the US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) realizes that the assisted suicide lobby took advantage of the Covid-19 crisis to gain approval for assisted suicide by telehealth.

I urge you to contact Alex M Azar II, the HHS Secretary at: Secretary@HHS.gov or call his office at: 202-690-7000

Tell Secretary Azar that assisted suicide is not medical treatment or a form of healthcare and regulations must not permit assisted suicide approvals by telehealth. 

*Sign the petition: Healthcare regulations must not permit assisted suicide approvals by telehealth (Link).

2 comments:

Michel T. said...

No place where to sign...or tell me where the click to send is?
M.
Micthibohv@gmail.com

Alex Schadenberg said...

https://www.citizengo.org/en/signit/178147/view