When entering a medical facility the last situation you ever hope to be faced with is whether or not to put yourself through medical treatment. Over the years treatment outcomes and survival rate have increase with difficult surgeries. However, for some individuals the quality of life is faced by the quantity of life that a lifesaving treatment may bring. This topic has been all through newspapers and spreads nationwide as individuals forego curative medical treatment because of religious beliefs.
Patients in the United States have a right to refuse care if treatment is being recommended for non-life-threatening illnesses according to the Washington School of Medicine (2012). The simple task of refilling a prescription, or choosing to not get a flu shot are all acts of not following through with treatment mechanisms. Patients often times refuse medical treatment for far more reasons than just religious beliefs. Subconscious emotion reasons about side effects, pain, healing time, and the procedure itself scares patient’s away (Washington School of Medicine, 2012).
Legal, ethical, and moral issues of foregoing medical treatment
Am actual account of religious beliefs and shunning of medical treatment was first recorded in 2009 with a Northeast Philadelphia family. The family whose religion shunned traditional medicine allowed an infant son to pass away at a nearby hospital. In 2009 according to an article published in the Newsworks Philadelphia Newspaper written by Kevin McCorry (2013) read, Herbert and Catherine Schaible allowed their 2-year-old son, Kent, to die from a bacterial pneumonia. The couple was said to believe in “faith-healing” and were members of the First Century Gospel Church (McCorry, 2013).
This case reached court in the year 2011, and the couple was convicted of involuntary manslaughter with child endangerment. The family had other children of which the court ruled to let them free of 10 years in prison if they agreed to provide adequate medical coverage to their other 5 children (McCorry, 2013). This sad situation occurs among different populations who believe curative medical procedures are unnecessary.
From a legal standpoint there is a shared consensus in both ethics and the law that parents are usually the parties involved and have the strongest interesting in ensuring the well-being of their children according to (University of Illinois at Chicago College of Medicine, 2012). In the case of the Philadelphia couple legally the consent of both parents was required in order for medical treatment to be rendered to the child.
In several states within the United States of America decision-making is withdrawn from the parents in order to protect the health of a child (University of Illinois at Chicago College of Medicine, 2012). Newborns would be considered one of the exceptions as health providers test for certain medical conditions at birth without the consent of parents. Most jurisdictions require...