Monday, June 3, 2024

Some Death Doulas arrange and participate in assisted suicide deaths.

Alex Schadenberg
Executive Director, Euthanasia Prevention Coalition

An article written by Alexa Lardieri, the US Deputy Health Critic for the Daily Mail was published on June 1 concerning the role of death doula's in assisted suicide.

Lardieri explains that death doulas are not new but the expansion of death doulas is not just related to the needs of many lonely Americans, but it is also related to the role of death doulas with assisting suicides.

Assisted suicide is currently legal in 10 US States and DC. Death Doulas are charging significant fee's to assist people in their suicides. Lardieri reports:
Death Doulas, who can charge up to $3,000 for their services, say they are increasingly in demand amid the growing number of medical aid in dying (MAiD) policies that allow terminally ill people to choose when to end their lives.
The role of the Death Doula will vary, but some offer different payment packages:
Some doulas charge even more for 'a la carte' services, including throwing a goodbye celebration, having day-after-death support ($225), assisting with MAiD ($1,600) and even planning a funeral ($225).

Death doulas speaking to have said some patients simply want company during their darkest hours.
Some death doulas mainly provide care for lonely people as they approach death. Lardieri reports:

Washington DC-based death doula Laura Lyster-Mensh told a lot of her services take place in a hospice, where she spends time with people who have no family in their last days, holding their hands as they die: ' I do a lot of literal hand holding.'

She said: ‘I think that service really calls to me because I don’t think anyone should die alone. It is important to give dignity and humanity to people who are ending their lives without loved ones around them.'

While it is not clear how many Americans die alone in hospice care, there is a loneliness epidemic among the elderly in the US, with more than one-quarter of people older than 60 living by themselves.
Laudieri explains that death doulas are often needed to fill the gap of hospice care. Some people are unable to obtain hospice care while other times, the hospice provider is so busy that the client hires the death doula to be with them as they die.

Laudieri explains that death doulas are a part of the growth in the number of assisted suicide's in America.
Douglas Simpson, the Executive Director of the International End-of-Life Doula Association told Laudieri that death doulas will play ‘a supportive role' in the MAiD process.

He said: ‘I can see us as doulas holding space and sitting with the circle of care of the dying person and supporting the autonomy of the dying person. If your uncle or father has chosen [MAiD], how do we honor their choice?’

Mr Simpson stressed they will not step in and replace the role of a trained medical professional.

He added: ‘If our focus is the autonomy of the dying. We need to be aware of what choices are out there and then honor the decisions [people] make based on their options and their dying plan.’
Death doulas are also involved with organizing an assisted suicide death
Support could even mean helping the dying person research MAiD or connecting them to the proper organizations or providers.

Death doula Kacie Gikonyo, who is a registered nurse based in Ohio and founder of the Death Doula School told that death doulas who support MAiD can also work with lawmakers and politicians in their areas to, ‘assure that everyone has the right to choose MAiD if it feels right for them.’
Some death doulas are involved with ensuring that a person doesn't die alone, while others are arranging and participating in assisted suicide deaths, and even lobbying politicians to legalize assisted suicide, where it is not legal.


Marimae said...

The notion of sitting with someone who is dying is admirable, if it wasn't so objectionable in the case of assisted death. There should be more people willing to sit with a dying person and helping the family to cope afterward, but all in the timeline of a natural death. God help us!

Lizabetta said...

I’m not surprised by this at all. If you can have mid-wives and doulas who support a mom in having an abortion then death doulas who support MAiD makes perfect sense in our upside down good is evil and evil is good world. May God have mercy on us all for too many of us know not what we are doing.

Anonymous said...

To hold someone’s hand as they fulfill their wish to be killed is itself a form of pressure to go through with the killing. - Thomas Lester

Anonymous said...

I find the term discriminatory. The Word "Doula" is Greek for "Personal Slave" and as such, some doulas may have been midwives but most were also charged with the other horrendous deeds of abortions, euthanizing of "defective" children, abandoning unwanted persons to the mountains to die from predators, holding the sword for those who wanted to "fall on it" in an act of suicide, and handling the atrocities that their "owner" might have clean hands in such matters. The doula did it and took the blame. Following orders. If the owner ever had guilt feelings over authorizing, the doula might be punished or even killed without recourse. To even see a person of color being touted as a Doula is reprehensible and echoes of slavery and Jim Crow. It is bad enough that people of color are seen with suspicion. But with the rise of white supremacy, when does this explode into full scale issues. Society is foolish for what it does to itself by its ignorance of its own past. As I have been saying for years, the whole "modern ideal"of MAiD and PAD is a primitive regression.

Dcn William Orazio Gallerizzo

Carley Robertson, MD said...

Some people count Montana as "one of [the] ten US states" ... including some IN Montana. However, the Baxter decision of 2009 did NOT legalize killing our patients.