Montgomery County Right to Life’s October Monthly Meeting was fun and informative! The meeting area was filled with warm welcomes and smiles as folks came through the door and it really made for a great evening! We are so thankful that Montgomery Bakehouse has opened their doors to us.
We were blessed to hear from John Seago, Legislative Director of Texas Right to Life, as he discussed end of life legal issues and the dangers of the Texas Advance Directives Act. He did an amazing job shedding light on how legislation like TADA, which is so foreign to us in everyday life has, in fact, very serious implications for ourselves and our loved ones. John provided a simple yet effective framework as an alternative for deciding what actions should be taken by doctors and families in the case of end of life care.
Have you heard of the Texas Advance Directives Act?
In a nutshell, TADA is a 1999 law that sets the rules doctors must follow when making decisions about how to treat a patient who cannot survive without medical care. This could be you, or a relative. While it might seem reasonable at first glance, the provisions of TADA allow doctors to make the final decisions about providing life sustaining treatment. The expressed medical care decisions of individuals or their caregivers can be ignored.
The TADA allows violation of our Right to Life
This means patients who are “terminal” can be denied the care they need to continue living. The only “oversight” is the Ethics Board of the hospital itself – composed only of hospital staff. There is no safeguard of independent representation for the patient. We as a Pro-Life organization advocate the protection of patients’ right to life.
You can protect yourself from the TADA
The dangers of TADA are real and could potentially impact you or someone close to you. John outlined some basic but valuable steps that each individual should take to communicate their end of life wishes. John stated that a Durable Power of Attorney (Medical Power of Attorney) is the best current protection for patients in Texas. The Powell Center for Medical Ethics and the National Right to Life Committee
have created a Will to Live – a durable power of attorney document specific to the laws of each state. Click here to download the Texas -Will to Live.
But wait, there’s more!
One of Montgomery County Right to Life’s primary goals is to educate the community on issues regarding the value of life. We recognize that this is not a simple black and white issue. The reality is that families and individuals can find themselves in very difficult circumstances, which can lead to very different opinions regarding TADA. Irregardless of differing views, we hope our readers will find this information helpful in building a stronger understanding and awareness of end of life care. John Seago really captured the spirit of what this is all about:
“These things are hard, they are difficult, so what we [Texas Right to Life] are trying to do is provide criteria to use rather than a formula.”
This applies to all areas of the Pro-Life ministry. It would be better to be informed and have different views, than to agree while being blind to the realities of the world around us. In the spirit of being informed, we encourage you to come to our next monthly meeting! There are also plenty of articles and posts that cover topics like this that might interest you, as well as news updates on our main page. If you missed the meeting but still want to know more about TADA and its impact on medical treatment, you can check out the full video of John’s presentation below:
by Christian Rodgers
Former MCRTL Pro-Life Fellow, Founder of Lone Star Right to Life on the LSC ~ Montgomery campus