How Mom’s Death Changed My Thinking of End-of-Life Care
It is counterintuitive to give end-of-life care to patients when it does not prolong their lives. Medical journal author Charles Ornstein didn’t make that mistake when his mother was on a ventilator.
Ornstein knows how serious end-of-life care can become and how the provisions concerning the ventilator are important. He also states that his mother does not want to be placed on a ventilator for a prolonged amount of time with no chance of recovery, as do most patients. The real dilemma is the expenses that come along with end-of-life care and the ventilators. Medical expenses should be spent to promote health, not for someone that is no longer healthy or technically not alive. Keeping a family member in the ICU can become a financial burden. Two extra days on a ventilator can be hundreds or even thousands of dollars and because of this, Ornstein had his mother taken off of the ventilator after five days.
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This is strong work, WhatsGoodie. Thank you for posting early and providing a good model for your classmates.
I repeat you’ve done good work here, WhatsGoodie. What follows might seem very negative, but I don’t mean it to be. It’s hypercritical to be sure, but that’s my job as I understand it. Stay strong, consider what I have to say, and decide for yourself how much of it is valuable. I want only to help.
Paragraph 1. (P1) You open with an excellent sentence.
It’s direct and clear. It identifies that the purpose of “care” is to prolong life. Others might dispute this claim, but their position is irrelevant. You’ve made your claim. Your job now is to develop and prove that claim.
Just as quickly, you drop the ball, WhatsGoodie.
This sentence doesn’t advance your argument. It’s “talks about” language without a purpose. Did Ornstein authorize the ventilator? Resist it? Have it removed? Object to its cost? Imagine if, instead, you had said,
You would have told us something that advanced the argument. Instead, we enter the next paragraph not knowing yet what Ornstein’s position is, or was, or how he came to hold it.
All of this is true, and we might try to guess that money was wasted on Mama Ornstein, but you didn’t tell us. We’d be much more invested in the conversation if we knew that Ornstein had squandered huge sums keeping mom alive to no avail AND more likely to blame the doctors, too, for wasting Medicare funds that could benefit patients with better odds. But you’ve kept us guessing.
You’re contradicting yourself here, WhatsGoodie. Your first sentence objected to care that does not prolong life. But that ventilator, whatever its costs or faults, does prolong life, expensively and not very productively.
Now you have clarified that you want money spent to promote health, not longer unhealthy life. But at what cost?
I’m allowed to ask questions, WhatsGoodie. You’re not. This task requires you to make, develop, and prove an argument. So, is it worth it or not?
Whatever you decide, no sentence is too early to reveal your point of view. You might need to revise your strong, clear, first sentence to better indicate your actual thesis.
Thank you again for submitting to this scrutiny, WhatsGoodie. Yours is an excellent first draft, but we know what they’re worth. 🙂