Outpouring of encouraging persuades Chilean teen to reconsider request for euthanasia

By Dave Andrusko

Valentina Maureira with Maribel Oviedo (right) 22, of Argentina. Oviedo’s sister died of cystic fibrosis but she survived herself after receiving a lung transplant.

Valentina Maureira with Maribel Oviedo (right) 22, of Argentina. Oviedo’s sister died of cystic fibrosis but she survived herself after receiving a lung transplant.

Valentina Maureira, a Chilean teenager with cystic fibrosis, is reconsidering her request for “assistance” to die after her You Tube video prompted a wave of encouragement and uplifting support for the 14-year-old.

Maureira told the Chilean newspaper, El Mercurio, “There are people that made ​​me change the way of thinking.” Her dad, Fredy, told the Associated Press, “his daughter was especially moved by a visit from an Argentine family whose children also have the incurable illness, and was given hope by meeting a patient who had survived beyond the age of 20.”

Maureira’s video, which appeared to be shot from a hospital bed, went viral. In the video, she says, “I urgently request to speak to the president because I’m tired of living with this illness.” She said she wanted approval “so I can get a shot that will make me sleep forever.”

Her request was turned down but Michelle Bachelet, the president of Chile, visited Maureira in the hospital late last month. She spoke with the girl and her father for more than an hour at the hospital in Santiago.

Where did Maureira get the idea? According to the Daily Mail’s Christopher Brennan, from Brittany Maynard, who was “assisted” to die last year.

Amidst the outpouring of sympathy and support was Maribel Oviedo, 22, and her father Ernesto. They traveled to Santiago to “convey a message of hope,” according to La Voz. The family is all too familiar with the deadly disease.

Maribel’s sister Marisol died of cystic fibrosis in 2013, according to Brennan. But Maribel received a lung transplant in 2012 and told the girl that she now lives a normal life.

The Argentine offered to go to a doctor’s appointment with her because she wants to encourage Maureira to live.

They also shared contact information for doctors in Brazil.

‘Mission accomplished … the decision was positive. She wants to travel to Brazil,’ Oviedo posted on Facebook after meeting with the Chilean.

Noteworthy is that after getting in touch with Maureira, the Chilean health ministry began providing her with psychological assistance as well as medical treatment.

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