Saturday, April 11, 2015

Brother pressured and written off

A few years ago, my brother, Wes Olfert, died in Washington State where assisted suicide is legal. 

When he was first admitted to the hospital, he made the mistake of asking about assisted suicide.  I say a mistake, because this set off a chain of events that interfered with his care and caused him unnecessary stress in what turned out to be the last months of his life.

By asking the question, he was given a "palliative care" consult by a doctor who heavily and continually pressured him to give up on treatment before he was ready to do so.  Other doctors and staff members also lost interest in helping him once they learned that he had asked about assisted suicide.

With legal assisted suicide, by brother's choice was not enhanced; he was instead written off and pressured to die.  Assisted suicide should not be legal.

Marlene Deakins, RN
Tuscon Arizona