It’s not palliative care, it’s homicide, says Prevent patient during CPI

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“What they did there with many families who lost their loved ones is not called palliative care, it is called homicide. Qualified intentional homicide.”

The phrase comes from the lawyer Tadeu Frederico de Andrade, the first to testify this Thursday (28) at the CPI (Parliamentary Commission of Inquiry) of the City Council of São Paulo, set up to investigate the role of Prevent Senior during the Covid pandemic.

Patients and relatives of people served by the operator participated in the session and reported their perceptions about the company’s practice of trying to convince family members of elderly people to adopt what they called palliative care.

The measure, they said, would not aim to improve the quality of life and extend the patient’s survival, but rather to avoid costs with treatment in the ICU, which is much more expensive. In addition, they mentioned the postponement of diagnoses and hospitalization only after the worsening of symptoms.

Andrade had already spoken to Covid’s CPI in the Senate, when he also reported pressure for the adoption of palliative care even when it was thought that the patient was in a position to be treated.

“I am one of the few survivors of the procedure that Prevent had taken as an internal policy to lead to death patients who were in serious condition, but were not terminal,” Andrade told councilors on Thursday.

He stated that the doctors wanted to refer him to palliative care and that his death would happen in a few days. However, his family resisted and he survived.

“I was hospitalized for 120 days and I was supposed to be going to death within the first month. Because I was in the ICU, intubated, hospitalized, generating costs and the excuse was that I had no salvation. And today we know that dozens, maybe hundreds of families were convinced with this concept of palliative care,” he said.

The writer Gilberto Nascimento also stated that the operator’s doctors wanted to convince his family to accept that his mother, Terezinha, was sent to palliative care. He said his relatives overheard a conversation from the doctors, in which one of them asked, “Why commit a 90-year-old?”

The family resisted, but the elderly woman was intubated and sent not to the intensive care unit, but to a different sector. According to the report, only later she was transferred to the ICU, but she ended up dying.

“All the elderly people who joined Prevent Senior, the way of acting, approaching, the conversations were all the same. We felt completely cheated,” he said. “It was a procedure in the sense of convincing the family at all costs to accept palliative care.”

Tomás Monge, grandson of a 94-year-old patient who died, reported a similar situation. “After everything that has been shown, it is very clear to me that it is a gruesome practice,” he said. “We will never know if my grandmother was able to fight.”

Tércio Felippe Mucedolia Bamonte, who lost his 71-year-old father, stated that his symptoms were treated as “laziness” by the operator. Upon arriving at the hospital, the patient was sent away.

“He was dragging his feet, barely able to speak, Prevent would send him back home. It happened four times,” he said.

Bamonte said he even heard from the professionals who attended to his father that he was “lazy” and needed to eat. Later, when a CT scan confirmed Covid’s diagnosis, he was prescribed hydrochloroquine, a treatment that was ineffective against the coronavirus.

“Prevent took away from us the possibility of treatment, of cure, when aware that he had Covid sent him home. My perception is that they wanted my father to die at home,” he said.

Andrea Rota, widow of a 51-year-old man who died after treatment at the operator, was also heard.

She reported that her husband was treated with a so-called “Covid kit”, a package of ineffective drugs against the disease. According to his testimony, his symptoms, who had heart problems, were getting worse. The service also had several flaws, he said.

“They didn’t do the least bit for Fabio. I have no doubt that Fabio was not supposed to have died,” he said.

The CPIs in the Chamber can have 120 days, renewable twice for an equal period, making the work last for almost a year.

Questioned, Prevent Senior denied adopting procedures to free beds and reduce costs.

“In relation to the testimonies of family members to Covid’s CPI at the City Council, Prevent Senior regrets the pain suffered by the losses. She reaffirms that she has never treated her patients by adopting procedures with the objective of reducing costs or freeing up beds. This is a lying narrative. , mistaken, in order to achieve the company’s image. Prevent will continue to provide quality service to more than 550 thousand beneficiaries and will seek in court the retraction of all those who seek to discredit it,” says the operator’s statement.

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