The Healthcare Advocacy and Leadership Organization (HALO), a national Pro-Life group that aims to protect and advocate for the medically vulnerable, announced a new support hotline. The HALO Helpline (1-888-221-HALO), which is available 24/7, is now live in all 50 states. During recent months, Texas and the nation have seen an unprecedented attack on patient rights and Pro-Life principles for care of the medically fragile. HALO’s Helpline launched in a time when this service is needed perhaps more than ever before.
In a statement about the new hotline, the group said, “The Helpline will expand HALO’s reach and ability to deliver on our mission: to promote, protect and advocate for the rights of the medically vulnerable.” By contacting HALO, “Helpline patient advocates will offer free and confidential information, support, and referrals for patients, their family members, and caregivers who have concerns about the treatment and care a patient is receiving in any healthcare setting, either at home or in a facility.”
Patients and their loved ones often face pressure to hasten or even cause the death of a loved one who is in a compromised medical state. Instead of offering treatment and basic nutrition and hydration, hospitals may push families to remove life-sustaining care and dangerously overmedicate patients. Some of the most common questions HALO receives regularly are from panicked family members when their loved one’s are being threatened with the removal of care, including feeding tubes and ventilators, or denied treatment outright. Many families are seeking Pro-Life hospice care for loved ones and are unsure where to look.
Other questions with which HALO can assist people have to do with preparing for medical situations that may arise. The group can refer people to resources for preparing an advance directive, considering the possibility of a Do Not Resuscitate Order (DNR), and defining the medical language surrounding hospital care. Without properly understanding the scenarios that might occur, people may be unable to define the care they would wish to receive and the care that aligns with their ethical and moral principles. In every circumstance, we must strive to uphold the sanctity of human Life.
In our state, Texas Right to Life has been on the frontlines of the fight to protect the lives of hospitalized and medically vulnerable Texans for years. Because of the anti-Life 10-Day Rule in Texas, several recent cases have made national headlines. In particular, the stories of Chris Dunn, Carolyn Jones, and Baby Tinslee Lewis stunned people throughout Texas and beyond. These stories drew attention to the unethical, anti-Life Texas law that unconstitutionally gives hospital committees the power to make life-and-death decisions without the consent of the patient or his or her medical decision-maker.
As the headline-making stories of recent years in Texas show, the threat to human Life is not confined to age or group. Under the current anti-Life regime, all lives are at risk. Once hospitalized in a vulnerable state, any Texan could face the unjust revocation of his or her most basic rights and the Right to Life. Texas Right to Life has represented hundreds of patients and their families advocating for proper care in hospital ethics committee meeting and court disputes. Most cases do not gain media attention and remain known only to the grateful families. Patients like Lucy Huynh have successfully navigated the corrupt system to receive the care they deserve. Without the assistance of Pro-Life Texans like you, Lucy, and so many other Texans, may have prematurely lost their lives with the removal of basic life-sustaining care when they were in need. In Lucy’s case, her daughter knew to call Texas Right to Life for advocacy and advice in her hour of need, not everyone knows about the resources available to fight for care and more time. The HALO Helpline will be an invaluable service for connecting people in need with the skilled help needed to defend the Right to Life of vulnerable loved ones.
Texas has an especially threatening rule that puts vulnerable patients at risk, but the ethical concerns surrounding how patients are treated are important in every state. The HALO Helpline will ensure that Pro-Life Americans have access to more resources they need to defend the Right to Life at every stage of Life.