Tuesday, February 10, 2009

ALERT - PHYSICIAN-ASSISTED SUICIDE BILLS SKIP HEALTH COMMITTEE…AGAIN!

Just received from Hawaii Family Forum

PHYSICIAN-ASSISTED SUICIDE BILLS SKIP HEALTH COMMITTEE…AGAIN!

This is an outrage! HB 587 and HB 806, both bills relating to physician-assisted suicide, have been re-referred from their original committees. Click on the bill links above and notice how many times the words physician, doctor, patient, medication, etc. is used. The bills were originally scheduled to go to the House Health Committee and then move to the House Judiciary Committee. Today, unfortunately, the status of the bills changed.

Both bills are now only scheduled to be heard by the House Judiciary committee. This is not good news nor is it in the best interest of the people of Hawaii.

IMMEDIATE ACTION!

1. Contact House Speaker Calvin Say (808– 586-6100) (repsay@capitol.hawaii.gov) and let him know that you are unhappy that a bill dealing with both physicians and hospitals has bypassed the Health Committee. House Leadership should be held accountable for making decisions that do not best protect the people of Hawaii.
2. Contact House Health Chair, Rep. Ryan Yamane at (808-586-6150) (repyamane@capitol.hawaii.gov), and ask why the bill is not being heard in his committee. Let him know that you strongly oppose physician-assisted suicide!
3. Contact House Judiciary Chair, Rep. Jon Riki Karamatsu at (808-586-8490) (repkaramatsu@capitol.hawaii.gov), and let him know you strongly oppose physician-assisted suicide and that you are unhappy that the Health Committee is not going to hear the bill.
Legalizing Physician-Assisted Suicide would:

• Forever transform the role of physician from one who preserves life to one who takes life. This will lead to a speedy deterioration of the physician-patient relationship, which will adversely affect the entire healthcare delivery system.

• Leave society’s most vulnerable poor, sick, elderly and disabled populations subject to abuse and coercion – no matter what the proposed safeguards. The slippery slope to involuntary Physician-Assisted Death would become a reality, just as it has in the Netherlands.

• Inevitably lead to a duty to die, with elderly patients feeling the subtle (and, perhaps, not so subtle) obligation to end their lives prematurely so as not to be a burden to their families and society. Physician-assisted suicide would immeasurably diminish the sanctity and value of all human life.


1 comment:

Karen DiCostanzo said...

Physician-assisted suicide is an issue that intimately involves the medical community in addition to affecting the public. Bypassing the Health committee and not allowing this legislation to be considered by health experts shows ignorance and disrespect on the part of House leadership for the healthcare community and people of the state of Hawai‘i.

Legalization of physician-assisted suicide irrevocably transforms the role of the physician-healer from one of preserving life to one of ending life. It leads to deterioration of the doctor-patient relationship and adversely affects the entire healthcare delivery system.

We know from watching Oregon and the Netherlands that physician-assisted suicide leaves society’s most vulnerable—the poor, sick, elderly, and disabled—subject to abuse and coercion, regardless of proposed safeguards. Once the door to doctor-facilitated death is opened, the expectation arises that certain population segments have a “duty to die” because they are “less useful” and “over-users of resources”. This leads to genocide, eugenics, and abuses of the worst kind.