Release: Idaho Bill Would Throw Patient’s Rights Out the Window

For immediate release:
Monday, March 23, 2009                                                              

IDAHO SENATE BILL 1114
THROWS PATIENT RIGHTS OUT THE WINDOW

 Idaho Senate Bill 1114, which has passed the Idaho state Senate, is currently awaiting hearing before the Idaho House Health and Welfare Committee. If passed, the bill would authorize health care providers to deny life-sustaining procedures, including food and fluids through feeding tubes or IV, against the will of patients and their family members.

The bill establishes a procedure by which healthcare providers can override patient and family decisions to choose lifesaving treatment and care, including patient’s wishes in their written advance directive. The bill’s dangerously vague language means that health care providers would be able to deny treatment to patients they think have a poor “quality of life,” as arbitrarily determined by a hospital ethics committee.                                                                                       

“In short, the bill dangerously overrides patient and family rights,” said Burke Balch J.D., Director of NRLC’s Powell Center for Medical Ethics.  “It takes choices away from the patient and family, instead placing life or death decisions in the hands of a hospital ethics committee or the health care provider acting even without an ethics committee. In effect, the passage of SB1114 would mean the deaths of those patients the health care providers deem unworthy to live.”

 Spokespersons, including independent experts, are available for interviews on this legislation. To arrange an interview, please contact the National Right to Life Committee Communications Department at 202-626-8825 or mediarelations@nrlc.org

 The National Right to Life Committee is the nation=s largest pro-life group with affiliates in all 50 states and over 3,000 local chapters nationwide.  National Right to Life works through legislation and education to protect those threatened by abortion, infanticide, euthanasia and assisted suicide.

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One response to “Release: Idaho Bill Would Throw Patient’s Rights Out the Window

  1. I have a 9 year old daughter with a G-tube , who also has a diagnosis of cerebral palsy brought on by medical malpractice. Now think for a moment that you have a child who is born into this world without a say in their quality of life, not only to now be told if their life depended on it a doctor can again dictate to you and or the child if they will allow them to live just because they may think the child or adult has a “poor quality of life” based on the fact that they have a G-tube that provides them nutrition to sustain a way of life! Does it really matter if you eat by mouth or by a small tube? If you can swallow without choking or walk without assist? I know it is not for the world to decide who has a better quality of life. The people without disabilty and enough judgement to fill the world with hate or the small child with now harsh judgements or self pitty, and the parents and family who support , love and provide only the best for the child disabled or not. I strongly disagree, unless my daughter is faced with a life threating illness or disease her placement and or repairs as needed better not ever be denied based on some healthcare providers decision because they believe she has a poor quality of life because she can’t sustain life by eating food via her mouth.

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