Talking about death is difficult. As technology advances and new interventions emerge, those conversations get more complex. But dying is as natural as living, and decisions about the end of life are among the most personal and life-affirming any family can face.
That is why Community Mercy Health Partners, as part of Mercy Health, Ohio’s largest healthcare system, supports Ohio Senate Bill 165, Medical Orders for Life Sustaining Treatment, commonly known as MOLST. We believe it promotes good health care and good public policy, and is in accord with our understanding of applied Catholic teaching.
MOLST is an individualized medical order that documents and clearly communicates a patient’s wishes prior to a health crisis, allowing families to focus on their loved ones. By allowing patients and families to guide treatment, MOLST allows more choice than the current Ohio DNR (do not resuscitate) Protocol, which only allows comfort care. Patients who believe in sustaining life can use a MOLST medical order to support that belief, in an actionable medical order across health settings.
Importantly, use of a MOLST is voluntary. If a patient or family doesn’t want a MOLST, they don’t have to have one, and the form can be revoked at any time.
We believe the question is simple: How can families support the journey of their loved ones on their terms, in comfort and without undue suffering? We owe them our support so they live and die on their terms, in comfort and at peace.
Paul C. Hiltz, FACHE
President & CEO, CMHP
Senior Vice President, Mercy Health