Health Freedom Idaho doesn't take a position on the "faith healing" aspect per se as much as a government mandate and their involvement of the health/medical care of children. The government should not have the power to determine a parents choice of care over the child.
In Idaho, and across the nation, laws were passed during the 1960's, and 70's to legally guide state's care and protection of children, especially during instances in which it is found that children have been neglected or abused. The states found it necessary to pass statutes, to prosecute parents and guardians for neglect, who might be found guilty of neglect, to protect some children who would otherwise be neglected.
The word neglect naturally is used to describe a failure to provide care and treatment for the parent’s or guardian’s children.
Whose parents, guardian, or other custodian is unable to discharge his or her responsibilities to and for the child and, as a result of such inability, the child lacks the parental care necessary for his or her health, safety, or well-being...Neglect: Citation: Idaho Code § 16-1602
No One Form of Treatment Can Guarantee Positive Results
Licensed medical healthcare, since it was and is widely used as a treatment, was and is recognized by statute. The state of Idaho and many others recognized the fact that prayer was and is a treatment, and that many practitioners of treatment by prayer use that form of treatment exclusively. Today, many people use modern medical care exclusively, while others choose treatment by prayer exclusively. Many people prefer to use both forms of treatment. Some people of diverse cultures select alternative methods of treatment which are not recognized by licensed medical practitioners.
It is a fundamental, God-given right of an individual to make his or her own choice of treatment for themselves and as such for their children.
Conventional Treatments Fail vs Faith Healing/Alternative Treatment Fail
Since medical care and its practitioners are unable to guarantee complete success, it is unreasonable to assume that it is always the best form of treatment. Treatment by prayer alone does not always produce measurable results, but neither does medical care. A combination of the two different treatments often produces no measurable results as well. Still, most people can attest to successful treatment, whether by prayer or by medical or through use of both types of treatment.
It is of paramount importance that the state recognizes the individuals God given right, to use the treatment of individual choice, or to refuse treatment, not interfering in families or parents choices of conscience. I can think of few things more intrusive, than an external interference, by the state or another individual, in the matter of treatment, for my own body or that of my children.
We must not allow the state to re-define treatment to exclude all but state-licensed forms of treatment!
Neglect Should Be Defined as 'Lack of Treatment' Not Adherence to a Specific Treatment Protocol
Since neglect is and should be a crime, punishable by law, the burden of proof of a crime of neglect should remain on the state. If the state is allowed to define a totalitarian definition of “treatment”, the burden of proof of neglect, would be simply eliminated. Unless a practice of compliance with state-approved treatments is adhered to. We are addressing individual rights. This has nothing to do with any religious exemption.
Neglect should not be legally re-defined to exclude all but medically licensed treatment. Neglect should remain defined as it is, a lack of treatment.
If the state wishes to prosecute a parent or guardian in the event of the apparent failure of alternative treatment, then it must also prosecute practitioners of licensed medical treatment in kind!
If Parents Are Prosecuted for a Lack Of Positive Results for Their Treatment Choice So Then Should Practitioners
Before that should happen, be reminded that licensed medical practice is the third leading cause of death in the U.S. at this time. The death toll estimated from 220,000 - 444,000 deaths per year from state-licensed medical error. At the same time abuse and neglect is expected to be responsible for 1520 deaths of children according to the National Child Abuse And Neglect Data System in 2013, a 12.7% decrease from 2009.
"If people let government decide what foods they eat and what medicines they take, their bodies will soon be in as sorry a state as are the souls of those who live under tyranny." -Thomas Jefferson-
1. MEDICAL ERROR. THIRD LEADING CAUSE OF DEATH.
source of statistics/interview of author Death from medical care itself : John Hopkins University 3rd leading cause of death
original analysis: http://www.bmj.com/content/353/bmj.i2139
Medical error has been defined as an unintended act (either of omission or commission) or one that does not achieve its intended outcome, the failure of a planned action to be completed as intended (an error of execution), the use of a wrong plan to achieve an aim (an error of planning), or a deviation from the process of care that may or may not cause harm to the patient.
Pediatric Staff admits errors as much as 67%
from the Nursing Certification review Manual Continuing Education Resource Clinical Practice Resource
2. Stratton, Biegen, Pepper and Vaughn 2004 conducted a descriptive study that surveyed a convenience sample of 57 pediatric-care and 227 adult care hospital nurses regarding medication errors reported on their units, examining why medication error occur, and why medication errors are not always reported. This study primarily focused on pediatric data with a comparison of adult acute care nurses. Pediatric nurse indicated that a higher proportion of errors were reported compared with adult care. 67% pediatric care errors compared to 56% adult care.)
2. DEATH REVIEW BOARD FINDINGS Idaho Children who received treatment by prayer or alternative means:
Refusal of Medical Treatment Due to Religious Beliefs
In 2013, the CFR Team identified 5 deaths to infants from families whose religious beliefs prevented them from seeking medical intervention. All of these 2013 deaths were to newborn infants. ***IDAHO ranks one of the highest states in PREMATURE BIRTHS. Still more infants born in hospitals DIED receiving conventional medical treatment.
In 3 consecutive review years, the team has encountered a total of 10 deaths to infants or children who were reportedly not treated medically due to the parents’ religious beliefs. These cases were identified using information provided on death certificates and coroner reports. Since Vital Statistics does not compile the number of deaths in this category, it is difficult to estimate the actual number of preventable deaths to children of religious objectors.
For the 2013 review year, the causes of death to infants from families who did not seek "conventional' medical treatment included meconium aspiration, intestinal blockages, and sepsis. The CFR Team determined that each of these deaths may have been prevented with proper and timely medical treatment.