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RECENT COLUMNS & NEWS
Talking about abortion in terms of ethical decision making may be troubling to abortion foes, but besides being a mother, I'm also a nurse who cares for patients at the end of their lives. For me, looking at arguments about abortion in the context of how best to care for dying patients can clarify the complexity of the ethical issues in abortion.
End-of-life treatment guidelines would help families, physicians and nurses confront the inevitable with care and compassion.
No Quick Fix for the Culture of Prescribing that Drives Medication Overload
The Health Care Blog, April 25, 2019
In my mid-twenties, I was twice prescribed the common antihistamine Benadryl for allergies. However, my body’s reaction to the drug was anything but common. Instead of my hives fading, they erupted all over my body and my arms filled with extra fluid until they were almost twice normal size. I subsequently described my experience to a new allergist, who dismissed it as “coincidence.”
As a child, Christie Watson could not decide what kind of career she wanted. Marine biology appealed to her, as she had “visions of wearing a swimsuit all day… and swimming with dolphins.” A teacher proposed law, telling her parents “[s]he can argue all day long.” After quitting school at 16, Watson took a job with an organization called Community Service Volunteers. A nurse there suggested she try nursing: “They give you a grant and somewhere to live.” To the surprise of Watson's family and Watson herself, nursing stuck, and I'm thankful it did.
People at every stage of life depend on care from professionals. Jean Thompson Bird, a teacher at the Carnegie Mellon University Children’s School, introduces children to the wider world. Theresa Brown, a hospice nurse at Allegheny Health Network, works to keep people comfortable at the end of their lives. Rabbi Seth Adelson at Beth Shalom in Squirrel Hill cares for the more than 600 families in his congregation, many of whom are struggling in the wake of the Tree of Life shooting last month. And Kim Hardin, a therapist in McCandless, helps clients process trauma.
In The Healing of America, journalist T.R. Reid considers what other countries’ health care systems can teach us.
Sexual assault is excused as normal and forgivable. It’s not. Ask the women who’ve experienced it.