Bill would clarify end-of-life treatment - KWES NewsWest 9 / Midland, Odessa, Big Spring, TX: |

Bill would clarify end-of-life treatment

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Amarillo, Texas -  A Texas Senator wants to provide clarification when it comes to treating severely ill patients.

Texas' Advanced Directive's Act allows a health care facility to discontinue life-sustaining treatment ten days after giving written notice, if the continuation of treatment is considered pointless by physicians.

Senator Robert Deuell's bill sets out a longer timeline for notifications and an appeals process for families of terminally ill patients who disagree with the patient or the doctor's wishes for treatment.

Deuell's bill would allow 14 days instead of the current ten.

If the question goes before an ethics committee, current law provides 48 hours of notice before the meeting would be held.

Deuell's bill would require one week's notice, and would grant the family a patient liaison to guide them through the process.

The Senator proposed similar legislation in 2009, and it passed in the Senate but was delayed in the House and never voted on.