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Alternatives to Euthanasia

True compassion for those who are suffering always cares. Cares for the body through the provision of good pain relief. Cares for the heart by helping meet emotional, social, and family needs. Cares for the soul by paying attention to another's spiritual condition and faith journey. Maximizing care represents the best of what has been called the "culture of life." Here, the precious gift of life is affirmed, nurtured, and protected in all of its mystery and transcendent dignity. When someone is facing a terminal or chronic illness, the truly compassionate response involves acts of physical, emotional, and spiritual care, even unto death.

Assisted suicide and euthanasia, on the other hand, propose to eliminate suffering by eliminating the one who suffers. Killing is an act of abandonment and despair, not compassion.

Right to Life of Greater Cincinnati is working to ensure that care is extended to all who need it. Below are listed a few of the support services available to those facing terminal or chronic illness.

Hospice Care

Hospice is a special concept of care designed to provide comfort and support to patients and their families when a life-limiting illness no longer responds to cure-oriented treatments. Hospice care neither prolongs life nor hastens death. Hospice staff and volunteers offer a specialized knowledge of medical care, including pain management.

The goal of hospice care is to improve the quality of a patient's last days by offering comfort and dignity. Hospice care is provided by a team-oriented group of specially trained professionals, volunteers and family members. Hospice addresses all symptoms of a disease, with a special emphasis on controlling a patient's pain and discomfort. Hospice deals with the emotional, social and spiritual impact of the disease on the patient and the patient's family and friends. Hospice offers a variety of bereavement and counseling services to families before and after a patient's death.

Hospice Patients' Alliance (http://www.hospicepatients.org/) provides free assistance to patients, families, and caregivers to obtain quality hospice care and for those seeking help in resolving problems encountered in hospice care.

Children's Hospice Care

There are few hospice centers for children, but they are becoming more popular as the need for this specific care becomes more vocal. You can look for children's hospice centers at the Children's Hospice International web site: http://www.chionline.org/

Adoption

When the care for a child who is terminally ill or suffers from a severe medical condition, the family may wish to have their child adopted to help secure the best possible care. This is a very difficult decision - one that likely requires the advice of your physician, your family, and perhaps adoption agencies. You can also ask for help from state agencies and adoption councils.


Source: Right to Life of Greater Cincinnati, Inc.; www.cincinnatirighttolife.org

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April 19, 2014

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