The excellent letter below can be read online at http://www.benningtonbanner.com/letters/ci_19855794.
Monday January 30, 2012
We haven’t heard enough about palliative care
In recent editions of the Bennington Banner I have read many articles dealing with doctor-prescribed suicide. But I cannot remember reading anything about palliative care. Palliative care provides adequate symptom relief for chronic or life-threatening conditions in order to enhance the quality of life for patients and their families.
Many gains have been made in providing excellent pain management but more improvement is needed so that every Vermonter will have access to comprehensive palliative care when it is needed. We as Vermonters should offer encouragement to Sen. Richard Sears, who as chairman of the Senate Judiciary committee has declined to take up the issue of doctor-prescribed suicide. Senator Sears to his credit, is a proponent of palliative care.
Doctor-prescribed suicide is a controversial issue that would interfere with the continuing improvement in care that is humane and greatly needed. Let us all encourage Senator Sears in his efforts to provide adequate palliative care to all Vermonters.
HUGH E. GALVIN III