A new lawsuit has been filed by the family of an Alzheimer’s patient against his treating doctor in Westchster County, New York, alleging that the doctor ignored the patient’s Living Will and prolonged the patient’s life using medication. The patient’s Living Will requested that he be given comfort measures only and no intravenous medications if his condition were to become irreversible. Faced with life-threatening sepsis, the patient would not be able to regain any physical or mental function.
According to the lawsuit, however, his doctor violated the patient’s Living Will, painfully prolonging his life for another month before he died. The family was promised that the facility would implement comfort measures and allow him to die as quickly as possible. This was allegedly contradicted when the doctor ordered intravenous antibiotics for three days among other tests and treatments. After enduring unnecessary pain, the patient eventually died from dehydration, and now, the family is seeking justice for their loved one.
Priscilla DeGregory, Doctor Prolonged My Dying Husband’s Life Against His Will: Suit, New York Times, January 20, 2019.