Death Panels in Hospitals?


Death Panels in Hospitals?

As of 2013, in Ontario, Canada there will be no emergency medical procedures after 75 unless permission is given by a review board which only meets a few times a week.

We have worked all our lives and this is the thanks we get…Our government at work. This applies even if you have extra medical coverage.

Death Panels

The Ontario Government is now able to play God.  So much for caring for the people who worked hard for this country.  In a conversation about the “future,” Dr. Suzanne Allen, head of emergency services at the Wilson Medical Center in Toronto, was asked if she has seen any effects of the upgraded healthcare in her work.

“Oh, yes,” she replied, “we are seeing cutbacks throughout the services we provide. For example, we are now having to deal with patients who would normally receive dialysis can no longer be accepted. In the past, there was always automatic approval under OHIP for anyone who needed dialysis –not anymore.” So, what will be their outcome?

“They will die soon without dialysis,” she stated.

What about other services? She indicated as of 2013, no one over 75 will be given major medical procedures unless approved by locally administered Ethics Panels. These Panels will determine whether a patient receives medical treatment or not.

While details on specific operating procedures and schedules, Dr. Allen points out that most life-threatening emergencies do not occur during normal hospital business hours, and if there are emergencies that depend to be resolved within minutes or just a few hours, the likely hood of getting these Panels approval in time to save a life is going to be very challenging and difficult, if not impossible she said.

This applies to major operations such as receiving stents, bypass surgery, kidney operations, or treating for an aneurysm that would be normally covered under OHIP today. In other words, if you needed a life-saving operation, OHIP will not provide coverage anymore after 2013 if you are 75 or over. When in 2013?

“We haven’t been given a specific date –could be in January or July….but it’s after the American election…” This is shocking to any of us who will be 75 in Ontario this year. Her advice is “Get healthy and stay healthy. We do not know the specifics of the actual implementation of the full care policies and procedures–“they haven’t filtered down to the local level yet.

But we are already seeing severe cuts in what we provide to the elderly.  We refused dialysis to an individual who was 78 just the other day. We refused to give stents to a gentleman who was in his late 80s.”

“Every day,” she said, we are seeing these cutbacks aimed at reducing care across the board for anyone who is over 75. We can only hope that someday new OHIP will be overturned by the Supreme Court –otherwise, this is a death sentence to those who are over 75.

Regardless if you have private health care coverage now (a Medical supplement) — it will no longer apply after 2013 if the Ethics Panels disapprove of a procedure that may save your life. Scary, scary, scary.

Think about this. You? Your parents? Your loved ones? Didn’t know about it? Of course, not.

This is a huge reminder of the need to stay healthy.  Is this a death sentence to those of us who will reach 75? Yes!


Paul Collins, author of Mack Dunstan’s Inferno / Mystery of Everyman’s Way
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1 Comment
  1. Avatar of Andrew J. Sacks
    Andrew J. Sacks says

    Paul, thank you. Awareness is key, for certain.

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