The spiritual aspect of Western medicine


When the decision came in the favor of the 11 year-old whose parents did not want her to undergo chemotherapy, I was slightly confused. This 11 year-old is an indigenous living in Canada who has Acute Myeloid Leukemia which can be easily cured nowadays. However, the family believes that traditional medication can heal her without any suffering that she will otherwise go through in a hospital. At the end of the day, it all boils down to your beliefs and how they dictate your life. Jehovah’s witnesses aren’t allowed to get blood transfusions but when it comes to children, Children’s Aid Services (CAS) makes sure that the transfusion is done because it can be life-threatening. However, in this case the CAS let it go and sided with the family stating that it’s their choice.

I understand that people have different belief systems; some are more overt than others. But something like this should have been stopped by the CAS when it’s clearly life-threatening. According to McMaster Children’s Hospital, the child will heal with time if she undergoes chemotherapy; otherwise, there are no chances of her survival (minus luck). Western medicine focuses more in the physical aspect of health and completely neglects the spiritual health which is an important aspect for many people. But that doesn’t mean that one should be able to neglect a treatment that can potentially be life-saving. It is completely out of my mind. I just hope and pray that the child survives.

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