I (Vicente J. Velez) stood outside the door of a family meeting room, hesitating to knock. Inside waited the wife and the mother of John, a patient who was admitted yet again to the hospital for pneumonia and respiratory distress. For years, John had suffered a rare and cruel neurodegenerative disorder that slowly but surely robbed him of his youth, vitality, and spirit. He was known and loved by many. He was a husband, a father, a son, and a friend. I stood there like I had many times before. This time, though, something about the scenario ...