The following Associated Press article was entered into the national discourse earlier today, Sunday, August 2, 2009 — http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/200…
This writer would submit that the views advanced in that article might be worthy of further examination and discussion. My initial intent was to include each two-part segment, entitled “CLAIM” and “THE FACTS”, followed by my commentary, but soon discovered that discussion of the first item was extensive enough to comprise an entire essay in and of itself.
Should there be sufficient interest in this exercise, it is this writer’s intent for this to be the first of a series, following by subsequent discussions of other “CLAIM” and “THE FACTS” pairings described in the above-referenced article.
CLAIM: The House bill “may start us down a treacherous path toward government-encouraged euthanasia,” House Republican Leader John Boehner of Ohio said July 23.
Former New York Lt. Gov. Betsy McCaughey said in a July 17 article: “One troubling provision of the House bill compels seniors to submit to a counseling session every five years … about alternatives for end-of-life care.”
THE FACTS: The bill would require Medicare to pay for advance directive consultations with health care professionals. But it would not require anyone to use the benefit.
Advance directives lay out a patient’s wishes for life-extending measures under various scenarios involving terminal illness, severe brain damage and situations. Patients and their families would consult with health professionals, not government agents, if they used the proposed benefit.