NY Times: New York State's physicians "vehemently" oppose the state's new Palliative Care Information Act:
"...when patients are found to have a terminal illness or condition, health care practitioners must offer to provide information and counseling about appropriate palliative care and end-of-life options. Patients or their surrogates are entirely at liberty to refuse an offer to discuss these options."In the end, legislators acted when many physicians would not.
"Doctors are notorious death-deniers, often more reluctant than their patients to admit that it is pointless to pursue treatment that is medically futile. They either fail to mention hospice care or suggest it far too late — usually within a week of death, when hospice personnel have little time to get to know the patient and family and to provide the kind of care that can make for a graceful exit from this world."