August 19, 2016
(The New Yorker) – I have been an internist at Ben Taub for the past six years. In that time, I have rarely seen patients who lack health insurance, like Oregón, make it to the transplant list. The hospital is part of Harris Health, a county-funded network that provides care for the indigent, but as with most safety nets it does not cover organ transplantation, which can cost hundreds of thousands of dollars. This may be why, when I took over Oregón’s care, I fixated on the tube in his nose. Rather than prolonging his life with invasive equipment, shouldn’t my colleagues and I gear our treatment toward helping him die comfortably?
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