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Nurse sentenced for aiding in death

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A Saint Louis University Hospital nurse was sentenced to five
years probation on Monday after pleading guilty to voluntary
manslaughter.

Daillyn Pavia was charged with murdering an 86-year-old patient
in May 2001.

The patient, Julia Dawson, had suffered a cerebral hemorrhage
and was brought to SLU Hospital.

After the patient was removed from life support, Pavia injected
her with 15 times the maximum dose of morphine as well as a
sedative that had not been prescribed.

Kenneth Dawson, the patient’s son, did not want to prosecute
Pavia and did not think she was guilty of murder, according to the
St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

Pavia, employed by Tenet Healthcare Corp., will give up her job
as a dialysis nurse, a position she has held since 1993.

Assisted suicide is illegal in 49 states, including Missouri.
Oregon is the only state that currently allows physician-assisted
suicide.

According to Susan Hakes, hospital spokesperson, SLU Hospital
follows state and federal regulations, as well as directives set by
the Ethical and Religious Directives for Catholic Health Care
Services.

When the hospital was sold to Tenet by the University in 1998,
one of the provisions was that it would still operate under these
religious directives.

Only 17 percent of hospitals and 26 percent of teaching
hospitals currently have any palliative care programs, which
support and foster end-of-life care.

Hakes said SLU Hospital does have a palliative care program.

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Nurse sentenced for aiding in death