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USF professor becomes part of Schiavo case

A USF professor was appointed to the Terri Schiavo case to recommend to Gov. Jeb Bush whether the order to reinsert her feeding tube should stand.

Jay Wolfson, a medical professor and lawyer, is Schiavo’s guardian ad litem after David Demers, the chief judge of the Pinellas-Pasco circuit, appointed him Friday.

A guardian ad litem is appointed by the court to assist those who cannot represent themselves.

According to the St. Petersburg Times, Schiavo’s parents object to Wolfson’s appointment because they say he expressed opposition to “Terri’s Law” in a recent television interview.

“Terri’s Law” gave Bush the authority to order that Schiavo’s feeding tube be reinserted Oct. 21.

Demers said he doesn’t think Wolfson would have the feeding tube removed based on the transcript of the interview with Schiavo’s parents.

Demers also told the Times that Wolfson will review the court file, interview anyone he desires and decide whether Schiavo would benefit from therapy allowing her to swallow food and water. Wolfson then has to report to the governor.

Schiavo’s parents say their daughter might live without a feeding tube if she is given such therapy, but her husband, Michael Schiavo, said doctors have already confirmed therapy wouldn’t be successful.

Mrs. Schiavo has been brain damaged for 13 years. Many doctors say she is in a persistent vegetative state with no hope of recovery. Her parents disagree with the diagnosis.