[Skip to Content]
[Skip to Content Landing]
February 4, 1974

Life With Dignity

Author Affiliations

Bakersfield, Calif

JAMA. 1974;227(5):558-559. doi:10.1001/jama.1974.03230180056028

This article is only available in the PDF format. Download the PDF to view the article, as well as its associated figures and tables.


To the Editor.—  We would like to add our support to Dr. Levine's concept of "The Chance to Live with Dignity" (226:672,1973). Our efforts to promote this idea have been somewhat less than successful. It is our belief that the "die with dignity" idea has become popular because it is easier to "go along" with a diagnosis already in the record than to insist on rigid criteria for its documentation or to make a new investigation. Less work is involved in allowing a patient to die in the middle of the night than in getting oneself out of bed to start an infusion or some other such "heroic measure." In the health maintenance organization (HMO) and prepaid plans of medical practice, economic saving results from letting the individual go to his reward without "expensive procedures" and an accumulation of days in the hospital. It is our plea to medical practitioners