To most outsiders the Amish lifestyle appears odd. Those of us who are unfamiliar with the Amish often have difficulty understanding how they continue to live without many of the trappings of conventional living conditions. The Amish live amongst themselves and avoid as much contact with the outside world as possible. For the most part they prefer to employ natural cures and remedies when it comes to dealing with their healthcare and healing. Occasionally the Amish will make the decision to involve establishments or facilities in the outside world to assist with medical procedures they are unequipped to handle. This is such a story.
An Amish family in Ohio has a young daughter stricken with cancer. The Amish family in question originally elected to take their daughter to a modern medical facility. After subjecting their child to chemotherapy treatment for several months, the Amish family elected to take matters in their own hands and seek alternative treatment elsewhere. The state of Ohio, where this Amish family was originally from, has stepped in and ruled the girl must be treated in a state run facility.
“A cancer-stricken Amish girl has gone into hiding in order to avoid chemotherapy treatment. A court in Ohio ruled that all medical decisions pertaining to Sarah Hershberger’s cancer treatment would fall onto medical professionals and not Sarah’s parents, who stopped the chemotherapy treatment even though the treatment was successfully killing Sarah’s cancer.
For several months, Sarah who is 11-years-old, has lived with cancer. When she was first diagnosed with Leukemia in April, her parents had taken her to the Akron Children’s Hospital in Ohio where she was to start chemotherapy treatment. Sarah had lymphoblastic lymphoma, which is an aggressive form of non-Hodgkin lymphoma. Her doctors had stated that Sarah’s survival rate was high with treatment.
After roughly three months, Sarah’s parents stopped her chemotherapy treatment because the side effects were making the young girl ill. Despite the nasty side effects, doctors stated that the treatment, which was supposed to last two years, was effective in reducing the sizes of the tumors located in her neck, chest and kidneys.
“We’ve seen how sick it makes her,” Sarah’s father, Andy Hershberger stated back in August according to ABC News. “Our belief is the natural stuff will do just as much as that stuff if it’s God’s will.”
When the parents stopped Sarah’s chemotherapy treatment, the hospital fought to gain control over the child’s medical treatment. The court sided with the hospital a month ago and gave the power to make medical decisions for Sarah to a guardian. However, before the ruling was revealed, the family left the state and headed for a natural cancer treatment center located in Central America. According to the New York Daily News, the family has returned to the United States but is still in hiding in order to avoid the appeals court’s ruling that took the power away from Sarah’s parents.”
This story is something that should be of concern to all American citizens, regardless of whether they’re Amish or not. An individual’s healthcare and healing is their own responsibility. It is not, nor should it ever be, a concern of any government body, unless the family or individual in question has been deemed mentally incapable of making such decisions.
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