Hearing Scheduled on Parents’ Motion to Allow Terri Schiavo to Eat

Bioethics   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Sep 12, 2003   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Hearing Scheduled on Parents’ Motion to Allow Terri Schiavo to Eat

by Steven Ertelt
LifeNews.com Editor
September 12, 2003

Clearwater, FL (LifeNews.com) — The Terri Schiavo saga will continue on Monday as Circuit Court Judge George Greer will hear a motion filed by Terri’s parents to allow her to eat on her own.

On Thursday, Greer postponed a decision until next week on removing Terri from a feeding tube that is helping her receive nutrition.

The motion filed by Pat Anderson, attorney for Terri’s parents Bob and Mary Schindler, requests that Terri be given adequate time and therapy to relearn eating skills and receive appropriate rehabilitation before Judge Greer allows the removal of a gastric tube that provides her nutrition and hydration.

The motion calls for delaying removal of the feeding tube until the transition has been completed and Terri can eat on her own.

"The court must give her a chance to transition to nutrition by mouth," Anderson said, adding that Terri "has never been given the chance to get better. She’s been treated as if she’s already dead."

Anderson says if Greer withdraws the feeding tube without allowing Terri a chance to eat on her own, he is violating Florida law.

The Schindlers say Michael Schiavo, Terri’s husband, is only interested in quickly causing Terri’s death.

"Given the guardian’s repeated representations to this court that the withdrawal of the tube will cause Terri to die, it is clear that the guardian intends to prevent the oral administration of food and water. It is this act of prevention that is intended to cause Terri’s death," the motion reads.

The motion cites Florida statutes (744.3215) that allow disabled people like Terri the rights to rehabilitation.

The petition also seeks to remove Michael as Terri’s guardian and cites numerous abuses previously reported by LifeNews.com, including violation of a 1996 court order requiring him to properly inform the Schindlers of Terri’s medical condition and refusal to provide Terri with proper medical treatment during two recent hospitalizations.

Removing Terri from the feeding tube would cause her death a painful death via starvation over the course of a week or two. Michael says Terri would want to die, but doctors for the parents say that Terri, with proper rehabilitative care, could recover. She is on no form of artificial life support.

Terri collapsed under questionable circumstances. Doctors initially say she suffered from a potassium imbalance that led to a brain injury and oxygen deprivation. Other medical personnel have observed signs of abuse and some documents in Terri’s original medical file suggest she may have been a victim of physical assault.

Michael Schiavo has been providing only maintenance care for his wife since receiving an insurance award that provided $300,000 to him for lost companionship and $700,000 to provide for his wife’s medical care and rehabilitation. Michael is currently living with another woman with whom he has had a child, though he is still legally married to Terri.

Related web sites:
Terri Schiavo’s Parent’s Site – https://www.terrisfight.org

Anderon’s motion for the family –
https://www.terrisfight.org./downloads/petition%20for%20intervention.pdf