Last August I suddenly fell ill, and within hours I had to be taken to the emergency room where pneumonia was diagnosed. I was given a prescription for both antibiotics and an extremely heavy pain killer. I quickly discovered that the pain killer made me sicker then what I actually was before; previously I only had a pain in my side, the drug gave me nausea, fever and several other problems I won’t mention. I immediately stopped taking it, and I quickly recovered. I will never, ever, take that medication again.
I learned that day that not everything the doctor tells you is beneficial. While the antibiotics did wonders, the pain medicine was awful. It’s not their fault, they did the best they could with the excellent training that the American health system gives. I still trust doctors, but I now feel more confident to speak up when I question their treatment, or to terminate it when I find it doing more harm then good.
You can read the story for yourself, but here are the highlights. A 16 year old in
Words can hardly express my anger at this, but I will try.
While I feel that the choice to go to
Further, if they are legally required to seek state approved methods of treatment, are they no longer able to choose what hospital they wish to be at? Further, who is financially responsible? It is a private hospital, so are they required to pay for service that they do not want, at a private business that they did not choose? If the county now holds partial custody, does the state pay for it (if that were the case, this could easily be interpreted as a loop hole for unlegislated socialized children’s medicine)?
Would the state then have the right to seize a child if it disapproves of the doctor the parents are using? Does it have the right to seize a child if the parents want to use organic baby food that isn’t enriched with extra vitamins that a panel of doctors and social workers feel all babies should have extra of? What if the doctors prescribed treatment that went against the parent’s ethical (but not necessarily religious) views? What if the doctors are wrong? If he dies as a result of state ordered medical treatment, who is responsible?
I hope that the judge took these concerns into account (by which I mean the principles behind the examples), but I wonder if he realizes the dangerous precedent he has set. He may have saved the kids life, he may have killed him, time will only tell. But parents (and potential parents) everywhere should take note of this. One day their choices may be questioned, their rights as parents suspended, and their child potentially endangered. For one family in