Andrea Clarke's Struggle for Life

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andrea_clarke_protest.jpg

Update: Breaking News here - the hospital is giving the family three days.

The great state of Texas has apparently adopted euthanasia as a means for controlling its health care costs. I'm told that Andrea Clark, a woman whose life hangs in the balance, is one of many individuals whose medical treatment is being withdrawn for the express purpose of ending their lives.

Andrea, 54, suffered complications following open heart surgery that left her dependent upon a respirator for survival. Although her motor control faculties were damaged, according to her family, her cognitive abilities were unaffected.

On April 19, St. Luke's Episcopal Hospital in Houston, TX informed Andrea's closest kin that her medical care would be discontinued in 10 days; an ethics committee decided to "pull the plug" in a flagrant act of (passive) euthanasia. Amazingly, the committee included an Episcopalian priest who asserted, "it's wrong to keep Andrea alive, she is suffering," despite having had no contact with her. [as reported by Ree-C Murphey].

Until early last week, Andrea was able to make her own medical decisions and had decided that she wanted life saving treatment until the point of "natural death". However, "the physicians decided to increase her pain medication and anesthetize her into unconsciousness," revealed her sister, Melanie Childers.

In a brief conversation this evening, Melanie explained that before sedation, her sister was very responsive, both recognizing visitors and interacting with them. Although a tracheostomy left her unable to speak, she was able to communicate effectively by mouthing words and sentences.

"When her son comes in she smiles," Melanie explained. "She told [him], 'You need to get married'."

Lanore Dixon, another of Andrea's sisters, told KHOU,

"If their ethics committee makes a decision, it doesn't matter what the patient wants. It doesn't even apparently matter what the patient's condition is, because our sister is not in a coma, she's not brain dead. She's sick, but she's been sick before and she's proven doctors wrong lots of times.
Andrea's family sees her sedation as the hospital preparing them for the inevitable. "It is not easy, we want to say good-bye but she is drugged up," Melanie told me, her voice quivering with emotion.

Last Saturday Andrea's family called for a protest outside St. Luke's Hospital. To their surprise, the demonstration was well attended by families who had previously lost a loved one to the hospital's compulsory euthanasia program.

John Hawkings (RightWingNews) contacted the hospital, asking for their side of the story. Similar to other media outlets, he received the following statement:

"Ms. Andrea Clark was admitted to St. Luke's Episcopal Hospital on November 20, 2005. Due to St. Luke's confidentiality policy regarding patient privacy, it is precluded from commenting on her care unless the family provides written consent to the hospital.

St. Luke's treatment of Ms. Clark has been and continues to be consistent with its mission of providing ethical, compassionate and quality care to all its patients."

We would certainly like to hear more from St. Luke's Hospital.

Andrea's sister disagrees that the institution is providing ethical and compassionate care:

St. Luke's Episcopal Hospital, in my opinion, is heartless and cold, and only concerned about the bottom line. But the insurance company, Blue Cross Blue Shield, is also a party to this kind of thing. That's where the pressure needs to be applied. I am sure Blue Cross Blue Shield is suffering no negative publicity in this battle. But they should.

Most people don't know how this system works. And I wouldn't have known, either, had I not been faced with this horrible situation. Poor Andrea, knowing that her health was delicate, bought supplemental insurance policies right and left--most of which do not cover this type of situation at all (she didn't know--she was just doing her best, to protect herself). The sad thing is that Andrea spent large pieces of her limited income in order to avoid just such a situation, and here she is faced with it anyway.

Melanie and the rest of her family do not know what will happen to Andrea, "It's in God's hands," she said. However, they are committed to fight for her life and need the help of others.

The deadline for Andrea Clark is Sunday, April 30th. Although her attorney, Jerri Ward, is exploring "all legal avenues", state law apparently gives the hospital a surprising advantage over their patients.

In the meantime, Melanie has asked that those concerned about her sister contact the hospital:

    Andrea Clark is at St. Luke's Episcopal Hospital in Houston, TX. St. Luke's is located at: 6720 Bertner Avenue, Houston, TX. Their phone number is: 832-355-1000. Here's the website, and a general email address

Update: Andre Clark is not the only one! Meet Ms. Yenlang Vo's.

Update 2: We've received word that your calls have helped!

Update 3: Andrea's last name is spelled "Clark".

Related:

Additional Sources:

8 Comments

people need to be aware what this corrupt satanic country is coming to,next thing they will be lining us up like cattle for slaughter,we need to all ban together to stop this insanity,they did this same thing in concentration camps yeras ago in world war 2,america wake up join the fight brothers and sisters RISING UP ANGRY JOIN THE RUA

God have Mercy on them.Hear the cries of the family member that cares.If it's your Will to let her live,talk to their hearts.We beg you to make them listen and to put a stop to these killing of human being.Holy Spirit guide the family to trust you .Jesus,I trust in You.

IN THE MIGHTY NAME OF JESUS! PLESAE GIVE THIS WOMAN A CHANCE. i too almost died and was listed as a'mystery' patient in 1978 and had many people praying for me, and received a Miracle! i survived! plese, pray for this dear precious woman, Andrea, and give her some time to heal. she is going to fight through this. i beleivee in Miracles. we must All come together in prayer and pray pray pary for Andrea to pull through. i ask our dear Blessed Mother to watch over her and protect her and her family during this time. Blessings, robyn kirchner wolf (author of "of hope and Love") where this is love, there is hope!

Get the governor involved (Rick Perry - TX)! Contact him, as well as the hospital:

http://www.governor.state.tx.us/contact

God should decide when we die, not a Doctor or any other human. Please realize that it is wrong to refuse treatment to anyone who is breathing or think that they are worthless and kill them. Our world has gone so far away from God and His values. He will not put up with us much longer. I urge you to take a Godly stand.

God gave us life, and He is the only one who can take it away.

I think God is the only one to decide when anyone should die. If we do anything to cause death, we are guilty of that crime. Let her live until God calls her.

If the she is insuranced, the insurance company should pay to keep her alive. If the family has money they should pay.

I am against socialized health care.

Send Her home and give her some asprin.

I don't want to pay for it!




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