Medical Treatment for Death Row Inmates


#1

It does not make sense to me that a person who is scheduled to be executed, will receive medical treatment that will save that person’s life. I do not think we should be barbarians, but someitmes it reaches the point of absurdity. I read stories of death row inmates receiving expensive dialysis treatments and organ donations. Some people even commit crimes because they can not afford medical insurance, and need to have expensive medical procedures done.


#2

They recieve medical treatment, first of all, because it is the humane thing to do.

Secondly, they have the potential of having their sentence be communted. A communtation does not do any good if they died the previous night from a heart attack and no one offered them CPR.


#3

You never know when they will be granted an appeal - and win!


#4

I am well aware that witholding medical treatment could leead to abuses. In China, they kill prisoners for minor crimes just so they can sell their organs.

From the Catholic Catechism it is not immoral for a person to be removed from a life support machine, or to refuse cancer treatments because such methods are considered “extraordinary means”, and they do not guarantee recovery; they may or may not extend life. Families do sign DNR orders in hospitals for patients that are terminally ill. The dialysis example that I used previously was probably a poor example.

If a death row inmate is guilty; is scheduled for execution, and is not going to receive clemency; what would be the harm in letting that patient die of a heart attack the night before?

He is scheduled to be killed anyway. CPR does not work 100% of the time. Both God and Jesus said that governments have the right to kill the guilty. The catechism states that Catholics do not need to undergo “extraordinary means” to extend their lives when they have a terminal condition.

Would it be that wrong to not give prisoners medical treatments that are “extraordinary means”?


#5

This question could be expanded to include the giving of food and water. At its most basic level, food is simply something used by the body to sustain life. I do not think we should deprive them of reasonable medical treatment anymore than we should deprive them of food,

The question is then: What constitutes reasonable medical treatment?


#6

[quote=Brendan]They recieve medical treatment, first of all, because it is the humane thing to do.

Secondly, they have the potential of having their sentence be communted. A communtation does not do any good if they died the previous night from a heart attack and no one offered them CPR.
[/quote]

Excellant point…I agree.


#7

Should death row inmates be allowed to jump to the head of the line when organ donations become available? That is what happens in some states.

If they have some kind of terminal illness that has a very low success rate with treatment, should they receive that treatment?


#8

[quote=epower]Should death row inmates be allowed to jump to the head of the line when organ donations become available? That is what happens in some states.

If they have some kind of terminal illness that has a very low success rate with treatment, should they receive that treatment?
[/quote]

My understanding is that organs are distributed by a central agency called UNOS (United Network for/of? Organ Sharing) which tries to be sure that the organ will go to the person who needs it most but who will also get the highest and best use out of it. So waiting lists have a ranking. Length of time is one criteria, but other issues are also considered such as age, medical history (iow don’t give liver transplants to alcoholics over non-alcoholics). I’d be VERY surprised that any inmate would 'jump to the top of the list…"

Since most inmates are on state medical plans, there is often a withholding of experimental or deemed ineffective treatment. Quite honestly many insurance companies also refuse to pay for these treatments. So someone that wants a stem cell transplant where it has not been found effective will have to pay for the treatment directly. I cannot imagine that inmates would be able to raise sufficient funds if a treatment was not payable under state guidelines.

Lisa N


#9

Aren’t we supposed to value all life?


#10

Dear friends

:confused: Why would America worry about health treatment when they are prepared to kill people?

I don’t believe there should be a death penalty, it gives no room for remorse and the death sentence is the justice of men and not the justice and mercy of God.

God Bless you and much love and peace to you

Teresa


#11

I definately think that they should get medical treatment–we do have an obligation to give that to everyone.

However, I always thought it was humerous that they would swab where they do the injection with an alcohol wipe. It still falls under the same principles of providing medical care, but it always struck me as a bit funny.


#12

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