The Doctor who Supports Patient Choice – to the Very End

Maclean’s- “I actually felt I had done the right thing for my patient.” Gordon had gotten what he wanted, and what Buchman had done simply felt to him like helping. “It was so peaceful and loving that I said, ‘This can’t be inconsistent with who I am as a doctor’.” Dying is as much a part of living as laughing is, but we clearly don’t embrace the former quite like we do the latter. Now with legislation allowing people to make a choice about when they die, patients and families and physicians are faced with making and respecting what can be difficult choices.

What we learn from the story about Dr. Sandy Buchman in Macleans, is that dying and living are well connected within the context of a person’s life. For healthcare professionals serving an individual at the end of their life, assistance in dying is merely another tool to treat a person’s pain and suffering. If providers are to respect what is important to the people they serve, then providing this assistance when a patient has made a clear choice, should be considered as following the care plan agreed to by the patient.

Its often been said that dying is no laughing [...] continue the story

We Listen. We Care. | Compassion & Choices

Leaders in the care of patients who face serious and life-limiting illness have designated November as National Hospice and Palliative Care Month, prompting more stories about both options. The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel gives a very good overview of palliative care and hospice in this Q&A with Dr. Diane Meier. The theme of this year’s observance is “We Listen. We Care.”

Listening is the No. 1 objective of our End-of-Life Consultation team (EOLC). Do you or someone you know face a serious illness? Do you have questions about palliative care or hospice? A Compassion & Choicesrepresentative will gladly answer any questions you or your loved ones have about what these options mean and how each can improve quality of life. Anyone can access an EOLC counselor at no cost by calling 800-247-7421.

Caring about the patient, especially at the end of life, is a key objective of our educational and advocacy efforts. Our goal is to change the focus of medical providers to the patient rather than the patient’s illness. This is the core of our principles for patient-centered care. As individuals face the end of life and try to navigate the health care system, their own values and choices should be paramount. Our seven principles — focus, self-determination, [...] continue the story