End of Life

Comatose Florida Woman
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The future of a law created for the sole purpose of reinserting a feeding tube into a brain-damaged woman is unclear.

How much the Florida Legislature will delve into end-of-life issues again when the regular session begins March 2nd remains to be seen. There is disagreement in Tallahassee about what, if anything, needs to be done.

The House Judiciary Committee took the first step February 3rd. It proposed a bill that would keep incapacitated people alive regardless of their family's wishes if there are no advance directives.

The committee didn't vote immediately because several members expressed misgivings about details. The panel will take up the issue again in the coming weeks, though, and it could quickly get to the House floor.

Lawmakers in a special session last year crafted the bill so narrowly as to apply only to Terri Schiavo's unique situation.

At the urging of her parents, they gave Governor Jeb Bush authority to order a feeding tube reinserted into Terri's stomach, six days after her husband had it removed with court permission.