In Texas, if you will not get better, you die.

I wrote this at Bartcopnation on Tue Mar-22-05 10:22 PM

I am not a good writer, it can take me a week and still come out garbled.

I hope someone here will look into this information and write about it so it will come out for the entire country to see.

This came out during the Schiavo circus.

The post I made in 2005…




I have some sources, some you have to pay to get the old articles or go wayback to to get what was there :o)


Life-Support Stopped for 6-Month-Old in Houston

Yesterday Sun Hudson, the nearly 6-month-old at Texas

Children’s Hospital in Houston, diagnosed and slowly dying

with a rare form of dwarfism (thanatophoric dysplasia), was

taken off the ventilator that was keeping him alive. A

Houston court authorized the hospital’s action, and Sun died

shortly thereafter.

Today’s Houston Chronicle and Dallas Morning News have most of the details.

Both papers report that this is the first time in the United States a court has allowed life-sustaining treatment to be withdrawn from a pediatric patient over the objections of the child’s parent.  (The Dallas paper quotes John Paris, a bioethicist at Boston College, as its source.)  If true, the unique Texas statute under which this saga was played out contributed in no small way to the outcome.  As one of the laws co-authors (along with a roomful of other drafters, in 1999) let me explain.

Under chapter 166 of the Texas Health and Safety Code, if an attending physician disagrees with a surrogate (parent) over a life-and-death treatment decision, there must be an ethics committee consultation (with notice to the surrogate and an opportunity to participate).  In a futility case such as Sun Hudson’s, in which the treatment team is seeking to stop treatment deemed to be nonbeneficial, if the ethics committee agrees with the team, the hospital will be authorized to discontinue the disputed treatment (after a 10-day delay, during which the hospital must help try to find a facility that will accept a transfer of the patient).  These provisions, which were added to Texas law in 1999, originally applied only to adult patients; in 2003; they were made applicable to disputes over treatment decisions for or on behalf of minors.  (I hasten to add that one of the co-drafters in both 1999 and 2003 was the National Right to Life Committee.  Witnesses who testified in support of the bill in 1999 included representatives of National Right to Life, Texas Right to Life, and the Hemlock Society. Our bill passed both houses, unanimously, both years, and the 1999 law was signed by then Governor George W. Bush.)

Our bill

passed both houses, unanimously, both years, and the 1999

law was signed by then Governor George W. Bush

The right to lifers need to answer to this.

(Letter of intent given to patient or surrogate)

When There Is A Disagreement About Medical Treatment: The

Physician Recommends Against Life-Sustaining Treatment That You

Wish To Continue

You have been given this information because you have

requested life-sustaining treatment,*


*”Life-sustaining treatment” means treatment that, based on

reasonable medical judgment, sustains the life of a patient and

without which the patient will die. The term includes both

life-sustaining medications and artificial life support, such as

mechanical breathing machines, kidney dialysis treatment, and

artificial nutrition and hydration. The term does not include the

administration of pain management medication or the performance of

a medical procedure considered to be necessary to provide comfort

care, or any other medical care provided to alleviate a patient’s



    • Mulkum on August 18, 2009 at 14:09

    of writing about this I would appreciate it.

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