Surviving Hospitals: How Texas Law Allows Health Care Providers To End Treatment
And what you can do to stop them
by Impact Wire Tuesday, April 14, 2009
Robert Painter, an attorney in Houston with Painter Law Firm, has been dealing with hospitals that are trying to terminate care of their patients and has created a guide to help patients and families and their representatives who have just encountered this law.
The guide, featured on www.SurvivingHospitals.com, explains the how the law works against patients, the steps hospital administrators and doctors take to trick the families of patients (who rarely have legal knowledge) to quickly end care, how the hospitals meet and make decisions to end care often before they meet, and most importantly how to stop the process and save the patient where the law is loaded towards the hospitals.
In a recent case represented by Painter, a hospital called a patient's family and left a voicemail explaining that if they didn't remove their ill father from the hospital, that the hospital was going to send him "on to glory." The voicemail can be heard on www.SurvivingHospitals.com.
"It's a typical tactic used by hospitals to try to strong-arm families to make a decision that the hospitals want," Painter said. "The reason is, if you can strong-arm them without starting the legal process, then there's no review, no injunction or court case, no legal fees and no one will know the difference. Quite often I call this an effort to bury malpractice."
Painter said all cases follow a pattern of strong-armed tactics to influence the family to make a decision that's in the interest of the hospital instead of the patient. "In once case the hospital tried to get the daughter of the patient alone to try to twist her home to end treatment of her mother or to take her home to die immediately," he said. "If she dies at home, then there's no report of the death, and it's all swept under the rug. They'll even go to family members and find someone 'enlighted' like the hospital and tell them to talk to the other family members, in violation of HIPPA, to convince the other family members to turn against each other under the impression that the patient wouldn't want to live like a vegetable. These are progressive tactics of intimidation, starting with arm-twisting."
Robert Painter's step-by-step guide for patients and families if they find themselves in the situation where the hospital wants to end their life can be found at www.SurvivingHospitals.com.
Painter Law Firm
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Painter Law Firm PLLC
12750 Champion Forest Drive
Houston, TX 77066
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