Finding Integrated MD Care was a gift! My 92-year-old best friend was slowly losing his capacities to participate in life. He didn’t have a diagnosis amenable to cure, or even subject to improvement with pills, therapy, etc. Yet he faced so many compromises to his hearing, swallowing, breathing, balance. His feeling that he was “done with this life" grew. He became determined to avoid the long, slow decline he foresaw. After many years of reflection, conversations with his family and friends, and research, he came to a decision that this was the time for him to leave. Stopping eating and drinking (VSED) was his choice. But it’s one thing to come to such a decision, and quite another to actually implement it.
That is where the “gift” of Integrated MD Care entered the scene. In my estimation, “Care” is the operative word in the name of this practice. Yes, it offers high-level medicine. Yes, it provides a truly impressive level of integration of the widest array of services. But care is its hallmark. We needed a caring adult in the room to move us from our situation, to his goal of ending his life at home in a peaceful, comfortable way. That “adult” was this practice.
We found this “gift” at a Hemlock Society meeting where Dr. Bob was speaking on the topic of Voluntary Stop Eating and Drinking (VSED), and we are forever grateful for their friendship and assistance. They knew how to deliver what we desired and needed, and to do so in the most caring and helpful manner. Elizabeth and Dr. Bob have assembled a remarkable support team. A special shout out to the nursing staff. Truly exceptional. It took just one phone call and one consultation with Dr. Bob and Elizabeth to feel that we had found the team, really the extended family, that would guide and support our journey. We were not disappointed.