Sunday, December 20, 2015

Houston Methodist Hospital Wants Chris Dunn Dead for Christmas

The thing Houston Methodist Hospital officials want most for Christmas is the death of patient Chris Dunn.   While most of us are preparing to celebrate the birth of  Jesus Christ who healed the sick, Houston Methodist Hospital grinches are plotting to kill a patient.    The former EMT who once worked to save lives now has to plea for his life with hospital administrators who have less compassion than Ebenezer Scrooge.  

Religious organizations like the Methodist Episcopal Church established hospitals like the one in Houston(1919) to provide medical care regardless of ability to pay.. Now nearly a century later the people who run  Houston Methodist Hospital share Ebenezer Scrooge's philosophy that those like Chris Dunn who cannot pay"should die and  reduce the surplus populous." 

Dunn's case sounds like a dream case for a malpractice attorney.   

While waiting for a subsidized insurance card so he could get a diagnosis for a mass in his pancreas, Dunn began vomiting blood. On October 12 he was taken to a small hospital in Pasadena, Texas.  The hospital stabilized him but  for unexplained reasons placed him on a ventilator before transferring him to Houston Methodist Hospital. He remains on a ventilator even though his lungs were not a problem.  Doctors there told the family that he was in systematic organ failure and would die within two or three weeks ago.  That was two months ago.  Doctors think  he is dying of  cancer but have not consulted an oncologist.  Blood tests haven't show any positive markers for cancer.

Recently the hospital handed Dunn's mother, Evelyn Kelly, a notice invoking the 1999 Texas Advance Directives Act (TADA) which allows a hospital to arbitrarily ignore the patient's desires and take actions that can result in the patient's death.  She contacted Texas Right to Life which is helping her to fight for her son's life.

 Someone has set up an  account for Chris Dunn so  people can donate money to help pay his medical bills. According to Texas Right to Life the family plans to challenge the constitutionality of the law which the Texas Office of Attorney General has indicated it won't defend.   Someone should tell hospital that if they succeed in killing Dunn and the law is subsequently found unconstitutional, a politically ambitious prosecutor could charge them with premeditated murder. 
When I read Dunn's story, my first thought was that if I saw this "plot" in a old movie or tv series episode I would expect the story would indicate someone was wanting to kill the patient because he thought the patient had witnessed an illegal act.  In a newer movie, the hospital would probably want the patient's organs for a transplant.  Although I now suspect the hospital just wants to get rid of a non-paying patient I wish law enforcement would investigate to make sure there is no criminal activity involved.

One thing I'm certain of is that I wouldn't want to be a patient there because they don't seem to take medicine seriously.  They appear to be motivated by making money.  Healing the sick isn't a high priority.  I also wouldn't want anyone I care about to take a chance on being a patient there.

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