The Nevada Soviet Legislature is considering a bill, SB189, which would allow doctors and hospitals to refuse to treat patients who want to try to stay alive if said doctor or hospital “[h]as determined that the treatment of care would not be effective or is contrary to reasonable medical standards.”
Why is the inclusion of “reasonable medical standards” important?
Because it will allow doctors and hospitals to not only refuse treatment that doesn’t work, but to refuse treatment that does work by keeping a patient alive if it is that patients wish to not die due to lack of treatment.
“This is a bioethics meme known as “medical futility,” “futile care,” “inappropriate care,” or “non-beneficial care” — the bioethicists are still working on the best lexicon to get their policy goals enacted.
“Futile care says maintaining life when the patients wants to stay alive is not an appropriate intervention in some cases.
- Proclaiming treatment futile or inappropriate is a value judgment–not a medical determination — about whether the life in question is worth living, and/or worth paying to sustain. It essentially declares the patient futile.
- Futile care decisions may be distorted by prejudice against disabled patients, the elderly, and other minorities.
- Futile care involves collective decision-making that empowers strangers to make crucial decisions about a person’s life and death. It gives greater weight to institutional and professional values than to those of the patient and his or her family.
- Futile care is a form of ad hoc health care rationing. That means an intervention considered futile in one hospital might not be in another.”
In other words, if a doctor or hospital decides your life isn’t worth living, then they can tell you to f**k off an die.
The bill, as introduced, can be read here or below:
Nevada SB189 (2019) by on Scribd