Tuesday, 1 January 2013

Liverpool Care Pathway – This Is Inexcusable.

Dr Kate Granger: A dear lady whose tragic personal circumstances and predicament must excuse criticism and yet whose determined words and actions demand it.

Dr Kate Granger writes in the New Statesman -

As a terminally-ill patient I find these stories extremely worrying given what the next few months hold for me. If it were not for my background I would start to doubt the underlying motives of the healthcare professionals providing my end-of-life care. The irresponsible reporting I feel is gradually chipping away at the essential foundation of trust that we as patients should always have in our doctors.

I feel infuriated about the accusations of "backdoor euthanasia" undermining the care doctors and nurses provide on a daily basis. I also worry that the threat of litigation may drive skilled and compassionate clinicians away from the NHS. The challenge that now faces us as doctors is to overcome the misleading reporting and be able to discuss these issues calmly, objectively and attentively to patients facing death and their relatives.

There have clearly been episodes of care that have been sub-standard described in the papers. This saddens me that at such an important time in someone’s life the NHS is sometimes failing them, but I believe this cannot be blamed solely on the LCP. I feel it is because of inadequate communication or inappropriate use of the pathway with failure to follow the guidelines and lack of on-going training.

So, as someone dying of cancer in the foreseeable future and who looks after patients in the very final stages of their lives on a daily basis, the scare-mongering and sensationalist reporting of the issues involved - in particular the LCP - has caused me a great deal of personal anguish. It is going to take a monumental effort to restore public trust in our end-of-life care practices after the damage done by the media, but I believe we will in time restore that trust by expressing compassion and doing our absolute best for these patients and their families.

Kate Granger is a doctor, a cancer patient, and the author of The Other Side

There are people also in a state of personal anguish whose loved ones have suffered and perished because of this murderous protocol. 

There are people also infuriated whose loved ones have suffered and perished because of this murderous protocol. 

There are people also who worry that litigation embarked on by Managers and Doctors may cause loved ones to suffer and perish because of this murderous protocol.

There are people who make accusations, not merely of "back-door euthanasia", but of murder, whose loved ones have suffered and perished because of this murderous protocol. 

The National-socialist Health Service is rife with reports of sub-standard care and murderous actions by medical practitioners. Small wonder such a service has been tasked with responsibility to perform its protocols.

This is inexcusable.

We, whose loved ones have suffered and perished because of this murderous protocol, 
do hope that this year will see justice done and that a foundation of trust might be restored.


  1. Dr Granger is one brave young woman, I hope she will be one of the fortunate patients who live way and beyond the time supposedly alloted to them.

    I've noticed subtle changes in Dr Granger's attitude since she wrote that NS article. Her, perspective, which was initially understanadably very defensive of the medical profession over the LCP, seems to have become a lot more patient centric during the past month.

    Since Dr Granger commented that she has way outlived the median survival period for her type of cancer, she has become more critical of certain aspects of her care: for example, of the woeful ineptness of the information she was given regarding the side effects of chemotherapy. It would be very interesting to hear her critique of the LCP.

  2. She's already admitted on her blog that she has 'stockpiled the necessary drugs' at home (which is illegal), and she may, for all we know, have started using them herself. She may, for all we know, have brain metastases...I'm somewhat concerned that she remains in practice - she has no deeper 'insights' into her profession than any other SHO, nor any deeper insights into cancer than any other cancer patient, or cancer-patient's family. She seems to believe it does though.... missing the point of your blog entirely..which is one of the absent CONSENT requirement in law.

  3. Correction: it was said in this Daily Mail interview, not her blog:

    I would seriously contemplate suicide instead, even though it goes against everything I pledged when

    I became a doctor. I have already stockpiled enough appropriate drugs in the house to make sure this would be successful, but hope it won’t come to it.

    Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-2211442/I-want-enjoy-days--waste-having-chemo-Doctor-Kate-Granger-tells-shes-stopped-treatment-prolong-life.html#ixzz2GrACYCdo
    Follow us: @MailOnline on Twitter | DailyMail on Facebook

  4. One wonders a) how the regulations about keeping accurate Controlled Drugs Registers in her ward have been accomodating her stock piling drugs?
    or b) whether she is referring to a 'just in case' palliative care box? If these contain enough to commit suicide with, they contain enough for the district nurse or GP to bump you off with.

  5. There is and can be no doubt from a human perspective that the Liverpool Care Pathway, is indeed a not just a back door to euthanasia, but a come in by the front door, with a welcome mat and cup of tea, way to euthanasia.

    Whereas the majority of the medical profession would prefer us to believe that the face of Janus is smiling and happy and would lead us to a death of some tranquility. In a lot of cases, that is simply an untrue and false picture. The cases of starvation, hunger, thirst, dehydration, withdrawal of food, and fluids are rising. There is a vicious, murderous face to the Liverpool Care Pathway, which shows neither the embodiment of care, nor that of compassion. This is based around a summary of the patients condition, but is nothing more than a predetermination based on guess work and supposition, rather than anything medical or scientific.

    It is this that the NHS would decry, it is this side they put down to a mere mistake or misdiagnosis and it is this side the NHS are determined to bury, beneath their paraphernalia and propagandist literature.

    The Liverpool Care Pathway, can leave a patient subject to the most horrendous and systematic abuse imaginable, in a civilised country. How doctors can stand by and allow its use, as they are doing, defies both reason and sense.

    Finally, it is true to argue that there are comparisons between the Aktion T4, Hitler's own euthanasia program and the Liverpool Care Pathway, only a small amount of research reveals this to be the case. As for the review, to me it simply smells of some token gesture from the Government, whilst the practice remains the same.

    The only people who can stop the LCP are the people who will say no, it is not acceptable and we don't want it used. In the meantime, it will continue to be used and the outfall will continue to happen and yes lives will be lost due to misdiagnosis and more relatives will be left feeling bewildered and lost.

    The campaign to halt the use of the LCP should and must continue, for the sake of the elderly and their relatives. In a modern world under a personal care plan, there should be no need for something a predatory and prone to abuse as the Liverpool Care Pathway.