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View Diary: What are some Progressive Solutions to the "Medicare Problem"? (70 comments)

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  •  I started to write an advance directive (1+ / 0-)
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    a year ago, along with two of my friends. It's harder than we thought. I have not been able to complete mine yet.

    One of us already had a disease that she knew would kill her when we started the process, most likely within five years, although she was still doing quite well at the time. Her illness was the impetus for the three of us, all in our 60s, to do this. She has since died. She went downhill very abruptly one day and spent the next month in and out of the ICU, then in hospice for a month. She rescinded her original advance directive and did not complete another until she left for hospice, because, as I said, it's hard to say exactly what you will want before you're faced with concrete choices.

    It bothers me a lot that anyone would suggest that the money spent on her hospital care was wasted because she died anyway. Yes, she had a terminal disease, but no one knew when she would die. Her doctors didn't know exactly what caused her to get worse - whether it was the progression of her disease or a treatable infection. They might have been able to get her well again to live for an indeterminate amount of time, so of course they treated her. I would never want her or anyone else deprived of care in a situation like that. When her doctors determined that they could not get her better, then and only then did they stop treating her. It would have been tantamount to murder to do otherwise.

    And though she did not want her life prolonged if she was in a coma or on a breathing machine, she definitely wanted to live the last weeks or months she had left. I think almost anyone in her situation would have.

    We decided to move the center farther to the right by starting the whole debate from a far-right position to begin with. - Former House Majority Leader Tom DeLay

    by denise b on Sun Jan 20, 2013 at 08:50:27 PM PST

    [ Parent ]

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