Loved ones not always told their relative is on controversial ‘death pathway’
NHS doctors are failing to inform up to half of families that their loved ones have been put on a scheme to help end their lives, the Royal College of Physicians has found.
Tens of thousands of patients with terminal illnesses are being placed on a “death pathway”, almost double the number just two years ago, a study published today shows.
Health service guidance states that doctors should discuss with relations whether or not their loved one is placed on the scheme which allows medical staff to withdraw fluid and drugs in a patient’s final days. In many cases this is not happening, an audit has found. As many as 2,500 families were not told that their loved ones had been put on the so-called Liverpool Care Pathway, the study disclosed.
In addition to the withdrawal of fluid and medication, patients can be placed on sedation until they pass away. This can mean they are not fed and provided with water and has led to accusations that it hastens death.
Imaginez le scandale si un hôpital privé, pour sauver quelques dollars, arrêtait les traitements sans en informer la famille et laissait les patients mourir de faim et de soif. C’est la réalité du système britannique et puisque cette situation est devenue la norme, personne n’est scandalisé. Qu’en est-il au Canada ? La question se pose…