Medical kidnapping has become a growing phenomenon over the past decade or so. Done in the name of ‘the best interest of the child’, states and hospitals are taking children away from their parents in order to force treatments, vaccines, or tests on children. The rights of parents to make medical decisions for their children and the rights of children to make medical decisions for themselves, usually as teenagers, is being trampled upon. Religious convictions are being ignored. The separation of children from their parents in the name of science and medicine is being done at the expense of the children and parents. (1)
The American Medical Association has a section in its Ethical Code covering forced treatment. According to them, it is a grave violation of ethics. Their code of ethics clearly states “The patient should make his or her own determination about treatment. …Informed consent is a basic policy in both ethics and law that physicians must honor, unless the patient is unconscious or otherwise incapable of consenting and harm from failure to treat is imminent.” When a doctor or others who work for a medical facility takes a child away from their parents because they refuse medical treatment for their child, want a second opinion, or refuse to get vaccines, the medical practitioner is violating their own ethical code that they are morally and legally bound to follow. Typically, they try to reason this by saying that the parent is depriving their child of a necessary treatment or is actively harming their child by withholding treatment. The AMA Ethical Code clearly states that harm from failure to treat has to be imminent, which is simply not the case when children are taken away from their parents. (2)
Examples of medical kidnappings can be seen almost weekly in the news. One of the most well-known and well-publicized is the Justina Pelletier case. Justina Pelletier had been diagnosed by her family physician with a mitochondrial disease and was able to lead a relatively normal life as a teenage girl. When she came down with a case of influenza, her doctor recommended that she be transferred to Boston Children’s Hospital for treatment. There, new doctors decided that she did not in fact have mitochondrial disease and instead had somatoform disorder, a mental disorder. (3) Her original doctor disagreed but the hospital and new doctors refused to listen to reason. Instead, they called the Department of Children and Families (DCF) on the Pelletiers and took her away from her parents. Over the next 16 months in DCF custody, Justina’s condition rapidly deteriorated. She went from an active teenager who loved ice skating to a wheelchair-bound girl who could not move without help. Unsurprisingly she also fell behind in her studies. She even resorted to passing her parents secret messages in her artwork since contact between her and her parents was so tightly monitored in an effort by DCF to keep the truth of her treatments and condition from coming to light. This case was newsworthy because of the blatant disregard for parental rights, especially since they were already under the advisement of a medical doctor. (4) DCF even went so far as to obtain gag orders against the parents to try to keep them from telling the truth of the case to the media and shining a light on the actions of DCF and the hospital. 5 Boston Children’s Hospital and DCF egregiously violated ethical code in their actions, but thankfully, the Pelletiers were able to get custody of their daughter back from DCF. Many other parents have not been so lucky.
There are no revisions for this post.