When should we be allowed to ‘die’?


… and what is ‘dead’ anyway?

Go read this story about a pregnant woman who isn’t permitted

Here are the important facts, as I see them:

  • The woman and her husband are both fully informed about end of life situations, they were both paramedics.
  • The woman explicitly told her husband that she did not want to be on that kind of life support.
  • The woman was 14 weeks pregnant at the time she was found.
  • The woman is brain-dead, without the machines she would stop breathing.
  • Texas seems to have an unhealthy obsession with fetuses.

The hospital claims that it cannot end life-support because she’s pregnant and Texas law prohibits them from removing life-support from a pregnant woman.  The law is,

The hospital has cited a provision of the Texas Advance Directives Act that reads: “A person may not withdraw or withhold life-sustaining treatment under this subchapter from a pregnant patient.”

IF it was the case that law permitted involuntary euthanasia, that would be a good thing.  As it is, once a woman becomes pregnant, it seems that she forfeits the right to refuse treatment.  Got it, so in Texas a pregnant woman is just a womb…ish.


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Filed under Applied Ethics, Medical Ethics

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