13 year old boy denied chemo

Judge rules family can’t refuse chemo for boy

Came across this today.

A 13 year old is being denied chemo by his parents because they are using ‘alternative treatment’s based on their religous beliefs.

Without trying to offend anyone’s faith, it should be mentioned that their beliefs are attached to the Nemenhah Band –

From the article:

Nemenhah was founded in the 1990s by Philip Cloudpiler Landis, who said Thursday he once served four months in prison in Idaho for fraud related to advocating natural remedies.

Landis said he founded the faith after facing his diagnosis of a cancer similar to Daniel Hauser. He said he treated it with diet choices, visits to a sweat lodge and other natural remedies.

So I use the term ‘faith’ her very loosely. This sounds more like the people that drank the kool-aid rather than an actual, organized religion. But I’ll leave it at that.

With treatment, Daniel the 13 year old has a 90 percent chance of survival. Without treatment, doctor’s put him at 5%. He also cannot read and has no understanding of what it means to be an Elder or Medicine Man in this Nemenhah group…nor does he understand that he is sick.

Is this a post about child abuse?

About the benefits of modern medicine?

I don’t know. For me this is a post which reinforces how lucky I am to be born in a modern society where traffic sucks but I have access (albeit, not direct access) to the best medical care in the world. It also reinforces that I’m lucky that my parents were kind and loving people who tried their best to put the needs of their children first.

It also reminds me that sometimes the government fulfills its duties by helping those who can’t help themselves. But I guess we will have to wait until the verdict on that one.


5 responses to “13 year old boy denied chemo

  1. Child abuse? The government fulfills its duties?

    Ill just leave that as my comment.

  2. Ever since I read your post I’ve been sort of obsessed with this case. today the mom and child disappeared instead of appearing at a hearing. Beyond heartbreaking.

    I can’t imagine my beautiful children ever getting so ill, but I know that if one of them did, I would move heaven and earth to get them anything that would make them better. And if somehow I thought that my God didn’t want me to do that, then I’d have a BIG PROBLEM with my “God” and he/she might not be so godly in my eyes anymore. How does any reasonably intelligent person not choose the 95% odds against the 5% when you’re talking about your kid’s life? Clearly – these are not so-called “heroic” measures, but are tested and reliable treatments that almost always work. Any parent who whisks their kid away to avoid such treatment does not seem to be reasonably intelligent and has no more right to keep their kid from children’s protective services than one who has been shown to bruise or break the kid’s body. Utterly tragic.

    avoiding medical treatment

  3. Will – I don’t understand your comment.

    Child abuse – yes.

    Government fulfilling its duties by protecting those that can’t protect themselves – yes.

    Parents making decisions for their children that endangers their lives. I don’t care if it is based on religion, luck, faith, unicorn wishes or a belief that, since herbal supplements and clean water helped one person beat Hodgkin’s Disease, that it will work for everybody. That’s like arguing that chewing gum helped my dad quit smoking so all any smoker has to do is chew gum and they can beat the habit.

    I’ll leave this as my comment.

  4. WE are all entitled to our opinion.

    This is a response to Steve’s comment.

    Im glad the government is there to let us know what the right thing is. Those parents should not have any rights to proceed with a course of action they deem fit. Im sure they are hoping their child becomes more ill and possibly could die. Maybe some magical pixie dust will help his condition. How could any person with any intelligence believe that anything behind conventional medicine could cure this condition.

    Steve, I hope that the comment about alternative approaches was not directed at anyone specific.

    Ill leave this as a reply.

  5. http://www.cnn.com/2009/US/05/25/minnesota.forced.chemo/index.html

    apparently mom’s changed her mind. wonder what did it? son getting worse before her eyes? fear of him dying? tired of being on the lam ? who knows — just glad for the kid.

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