State and national leaders call for Texas bill to protect patients’ rights

Dozens of state and national leaders and organizations calling for the passage of a Texas bill to repeal the anti-Life 10-Day Rule.   The Respecting Texas Patients’ Right to Life Act was filed in the Texas State Legislature as HB 3158 by Representative Richard Raymond (D-Laredo) and SB 2089 by Senator Bryan Hughes (R-Mineola).  The act will implement a desperately needed reform to the anti-Life and anti-patient’s rights Texas Advance Directives Act.

Current Texas law provides a statutory process by which a physician or hospital is permitted to withdraw basic life-sustaining treatment against the expressed wishes of a patient or her legal surrogate.  Under the statute, a physician must merely receive permission from the hospital’s own committee to withdraw or withhold the requested life-sustaining treatment.  Current law awards the physician and hospital unilateral authority over the patient’s life.  After judgement is handed down by the committee, a 10-day countdown begins and the patient and her family have no ability to appeal the decision.  The law unreasonably assumes the patient or the patient’s family has the ability to locate, authorize, and facilitate a medical transfer.  As written, the law is a grievous affront to due process and is undoubtedly biased against vulnerable patients, creating an incentive for hospitals to work contrary to the well-being of those in their care and to make deadly judgments about their “quality of life.”

The letter released today features a diverse coalition of leaders and organizations who agree the unprecedented Texas 10-Day Rule should be repealed.  The letter includes prestigious national groups like National Right to Life and the Terry Schiavo Life and Hope Network as well as Texas-focused entities like the Republican Party of Texas and Concerned Women for America of Texas.  Numerous local grassroots organizations also joined the letter including the Northeast Tarrant Tea Party and Fredericksburg Tea Party.  Grassroots leaders like Richard and Yvette DeOtte of Life Education and Action and JoAnn Fleming of Grassroots America – We The People PAC have signed on alongside medical experts such as Dr. David Hargroder, M.D. of the John Paul the Great Bioethics Commission and Julie Grimstad of the Healthcare Advocacy and Leadership Organization.

Legal experts, grassroots leaders, medical professionals, and political leaders alike have all chosen to join their voices and speak out against this unjust rule:

“The state undermines respect for the dignity of vulnerable patients when the authority to arbitrarily and unilaterally override the life and death medical decisions of patients and their families is given to doctors and hospital committees… Therefore, we, the undersigned, respectfully urge the Texas Legislature to repeal the unethical 10-day countdown clause in Section 166.046 of the Texas Health and Safety Code during this 86th Session of the Texas Legislature.”

Texas Right to Life strongly believes that each individual life has immeasurable dignity and worth, and this conviction has prompted us to serve as patient advocates for those victimized by this anti-Life measure.  Not only do we work tirelessly in the Capitol each legislative session to reform this unjust law, we also fight personally for those patients and families who contact us in their most desperate time of need.

For the sake of the countless Texans victimized each year, the “10-Day Rule” must not survive another legislative session.  Click here to read the letter in support of Repealing the Ten-Day Rule.

Experts, Pro-Life, or grassroots leaders can add your signature to this letter and call on the Legislature to repeal the anti-Life 10-Day Rule in the Texas Advance Directives Act by emailing

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