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Putting an End to Medical Cruelty: A Horrifying Article in Yahoo this Week by T. L. Kittle

PALMDALE, Calif., March 3 /PRNewswire/ -- This is an example of another news article, in a respected outlet (Yahoo), presenting the argument that denying people medical care who clinically need it is a good idea.

(I'm not saying Yahoo agrees with this philosophy, but it's disgusting to see this argument being presented by 'credible' members of the medical profession resulting in an article in a respected news outlet.)

This time, they're* going after whether or not people dying of Alzheimer's should be treated with antibiotics or not, even if they have an infection. This is particularly horrifying because Alzheimer patients can't defend themselves the same way 'normal' people can and some of these patients probably can't defend themselves at all. (*I'm generally referring to anyone who ever makes the argument it's acceptable to deny someone access to medical care.)

I don't know how anyone who calls them self a medical professional can even consider for a moment whether or not they should give a patient all the best medical treatment they have access to, unless the patient him or herself has stated and/or written down and signed otherwise.

It is their responsibility, their oath, and their contract with God to give someone another day-another moment-if it is at all possible.

The answer to curbing drug resistant bacteria is not in denying treatment to those who need it. The answer is that we need to develop better antibiotics-get ahead of the game.

If the drug companies won't do it (because they make so much more money on drugs we have to take for years, versus ten-fourteen days once in awhile), then we as a society should allocate resources to develop new drugs in order to make the development of new antibiotics happen.

It's rotten to the core that anyone would even consider denying people access to medical care as a 'solution' to a problem-even to patients who " ... failed to recognize loved ones, had stopped speaking, were unable to walk or feed themselves and were incontinent." (Quoted directly from the article below.)

Denying a human being access to medical care when they need it goes against everything the practice of medicine is supposed to be about.

I just don't know how someone could know someone is suffering, have the tools within reach to relieve that suffering (the antibiotics), then walk on by.

Because of what, it's for 'the greater good' (which is basically what they're arguing)?

Bruce Johnson, as quoted in the yahoo article below (a bioethicist with the Hastings Center, a research institute on medical ethics), states, "But the extra time you have bought them by that rescue is not beneficial."

It is not up to anyone other than the suffering patient or their loved ones to judge what makes life beneficial and what does not. It isn't the medical professional's role to determine who should receive care and who should not. It is the medical professional's responsibility to save their fellow man to the fullest extent made possible by technological advances- unconditionally.

It's amazing how much we need to turn around in this country in regards to the medical industry, and it begins right here-with the philosophy of the industry itself. Like the Holocaust, most evil throughout time has had some kind of philosophy justifying its existence. It's time to decode any philosophy that encourages or promotes denying someone access to medical care, including, "they can't afford to pay," or "this test/drug/procedure is 'experimental' and therefore we won't authorize it."

I feel very fortunate to have had a number of physicians who have saved my life--a number of times at this point-and I feel very blessed to live in the 21st century with all the medical tools we have to help us.

The problem is that there are too many of our fellow man that don't have access to these medical tools when they need them, some of whom I've met throughout the hospital grounds or spoke to their loved ones with haunting stories to tell.

There is nothing acceptable about allowing a human being to suffer when the medical tools are available to relieve that suffering, and philosophies like 'he's close to death anyway so just let him die' only fosters further denial of care already rampant throughout the medical community.

And anyone who argues otherwise is endorsing a cruelty on par with the Holocaust.

T. L. Kittle suffers with a chronic illness in the Los Angeles area, gratefully under the care of a number of extraordinary physicians. Kittle is currently in the process of establishing a non-profit specifically designed to address concerns regarding lack of access to care as well as lack of physician control over medical care.

For the full text of the article on Yahoo, please visit the link below:


Suzanne Milano, Assistant to T. L. Kittle

Telephone: 323-843-4200

Fax: 323-375-0137


SOURCE T. L. Kittle
Copyright©2008 PR Newswire.
All rights reserved

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