19 Dec Letter to Legislators
The Iowa Coalition for Ethical Care is an alliance dedicated to preventing the legalization of assisted suicide. Many of us interact on a regular basis with individuals who are older, have disabilities or who are suffering from a terminal illness. We believe they would be under increased risk of abuse from “doctor-prescribed suicide” in Iowa. We are united in opposing any legislation or court action to permit physician-assisted suicide.
Assisted suicide laws are neither good health care nor good public policy. Even in the face of sustained lobbying, the American Medical Association has continued its opposition to assisted suicide. The safeguards and oversight contained in proposed doctor-prescribed suicide legislation are inadequate to protect vulnerable individuals.
A concern shared by everyone interested in the issue is to ease pain and suffering at the end of life because of illness or age. Current medical practice is extremely effective in relieving pain and advances in palliative care and collaboration among medical professionals continues.
However, if assisted suicide is more about advancing a concept of autonomy that creates an obligation pushing taxpayers and medical professionals to participate in the death of the suffering and vulnerable, we do not share that viewpoint.
If the law adopts this particular version of “autonomy,” namely, assisted suicide, there is a great danger for the vulnerable. Some states that have assisted suicide in force refuse to pay for some medical treatments while offering to pay for suicide pills.
For more information please find attached our flier “The Truth About Physician-Assisted Suicide.” You can also review some short videos that cover various aspects of the topic, including how insurance companies are denying treatment and access to patients who want it, by visiting https://patientsrightsaction.org/videos/.
As a legislator, your job is to weigh the potential benefits and risks of proposed policies. Please do not sponsor or support a bill in Iowa to enable doctor-prescribed suicide. Please contact us for more information if you are interested.
Thank you for your service to your constituents and to the people of Iowa.
The Iowa Coalition for Ethical Care is an informal group working to oppose thelegalization of doctor-prescribed suicide. Members include:
American Academy of Medical Ethics • Iowans for LIFE • Iowa Catholic Conference
Iowa Right to Life • Life Right Action
Lutheran Family Service • Lutherans for Life • Mercy Health Network