Skip to comments.Hospital won't aid transfer of girl on ventilator
Posted on 01/02/2014 1:08:18 PM PST by Anton.Rutter
OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) A California hospital is unwilling to allow an outside doctor to fit a 13-year-old declared brain dead after tonsil surgery with the breathing and feeding tubes that would allow her to be safely transferred to another facility, its lawyer said Tuesday.
Children's Hospital Oakland will not permit the procedures to be performed on its premises because Jahi McMath is legally dead in the view of doctors who have examined her, lawyer Douglas Straus wrote in a letter to the girl's family.
"Performing medical procedures on the body of a deceased human being is simply not something Children's Hospital can do or ask its staff to assist in doing," he said.
The refusal appeared to reverse the position articulated Monday by a hospital spokesman. He said the hospital would allow a doctor retained by the family to insert a feeding tube and to replace the oral ventilator keeping Jahi's heart beating with a tracheal tube surgical procedures that would stabilize Jahi if she is moved to a facility willing to keep caring for her.
(Excerpt) Read more at news.yahoo.com ...
A similar bed will be required wherever the body is taken, meaning my point stands. ICU beds are fungible.
Unless the family is willing and able (which they may be) to pay all costs of continuing this farce, nobody else (hospital, insurer, taxpayer) should be forced to contribute to their delusions.
Or possibly they can raise the funds privately, to which I have no objection except to note that a dead human should be appropriately disposed of, not kept around on machines.
IF there is a facility ready to take the corpse, I think the hospital should not obstruct the movement.
I do not know all the details of thisbut what is sad is that I read that this surgery was performed because Jahi had a loud snoring problem because of her obesity.
I can’t help but think that maybe a diet and exercise regimen would have been a better path to pursue because she is young.
Who offered this and why would this path be chosen?
I must be missing some of this story here.
Anyhoo, my heart hurts for the family. I am sure they are praying for a miracle. Not for me to judge this.
a very unexpected outcome from a tonsillectomy ... one that definitely bears investigation (especially in view of the hospital’s really rather odd behavior since....)
Can the body maintain life independent of the machines? In this case, the answer appears to be a definitive no.
My wife knows, were I to be in this situation, please pull the plugs and allow my body to rest. Just because a machine can pump air through my lungs and stimulate my heart through electrical impulses, does not mean I am alive. If my body cannot survive independent of these machines and there is no hope of living otherwise, let the natural order, death, take place. Although painful for a time to those grieving, I believe it to be more merciful to not extend the unresolved emotional trauma.
People should be smart enough to understand that all medical procedures have risk, no matter how small. Something may go wrong and you may be injured or die. Is the risk greater than the benefit? In most cases, no. But on occasion, absent malpractice, accidents happen or risk exposes itself at no demonstrable fault of any party. All humans are different, why should we expect all bodies to react in the same manner? It’s unreasonable, IMO. But I know I’m in a minority because everyone wants someone to blame.
No doubt this situation is sad, but I guess I’m a heartless cracker because I don’t think there should be a payout unless malpractice can be proven.
In the famous words of Dr. L McCoy: “She’s Dead Jim”.
Do the autopsy and dispose of the corpse as you and your religion sees fit, Mourn and Move On.
Then... let the lawsuits begin.
Your response makes no sense.
If a medical institute offers to provide such care, they can.
Children’s does not want to, but others will.
Whether she is brain dead or not brain dead has zero bearing on this.
She is not dead or this would not be an issue and the term brain dead would not need to be used.
People trying to sway opinion via emotion and shock, using the term cadaver are being deliberately dishonest.
I’m in general agreement with you.
Except quite importantly you are being dishonest by calling her a corpse.
Until she is removed from the life support and dies she is not dead.
That’s the whole issue.
As I posted on another thread:
If what we are being told by the media is true, this is not even close to the Terri Schiavo case. Terri was very much alive and this poor soul is not. The family needs psychological help, and as a mother I cannot even imagine what they are going through. I’d lose my mind if I lost one of my babies. I can’t help but think that they are demanding this because of their own guilt. This child underwent surgery for a problem that could have possibly been eliminated by healthy eating and exercise. If weight loss did not alleviate the problem then the surgery could have been considered. This family wanted a quick fix, but anesthetizing a small body and then carving out body parts comes with a lot of risks. I’ve also noticed that they don’t want to take her home and take care of her, they want her in a facility. They want somebody else to take care of the child. This whole case is heart breaking and disturbing.
1. The procedure was not a simple tonsillectomy and not nearly as simple as it has been portrayed in the media.
2. But for purposes of discussion, let's assume it was. The Law of Large Numbers means that whenever a medical procedure is performed a great many times, even the simplest WILL have bad outcomes.
More than 500,000 tonsillectomies are performed on children each year in the US. A 1 in 100k chance of death means each year, on average, 5 children will die.
That's why for even the simplest procedures you are required to sign waivers that you have had the risks explained to you. Those risks exists, and anytime anesthetics are used, as an example, there is a non-zero risk of a very bad result.
Something I have learned.
Many doctors lie.
I was in an intensive care unit, when the doctor called a bunch of other credentialed people in coats to press me into signing a paper that would kill a relative that night.
“Is there no way she could be put on a ventilator in the home?”
“There’s absolutely no way.” (room full of docs nod their head). A long with exhasperated signs and shaking of head like you’re an unreasonable idiot for asking questions.
I left without signing and did some hasty research.
It quickly turned out they were lying. While some might not have known better, I cannot believe the intensive care doctors didn’t.
One of the people who was pushing me to sign was a pulmonary specialist. I happened to ask the right pointed questions and she agreed it could be done — a quick and safe tracheotomy and she went home in a few days.
We got her home on a ventilator and she lived years longer, smiling, happy, in her own home with her family.
One of the reasons docs gave for not trying harder was she supposedly had pancreatic cancer. On her death, we found out she never had cancer...
I have a lot of other suspicions but there’s no point going over it now
Disagree. AFAIK, in every state the legal definition of dead is brain death.
She has been pronounced brain dead by 3 separate and (hopefully) competent physicians.
Brain death was originally put in place for the very reason that it is possible, in many cases, to keep a heart beating long after the brain has died. To which most people agree there is no point.
She underwent uvulopalatopharyngoplasty, which is far more extensive and risky than a tonsillectomy.
For those who don't know what this surgery is, excess tissue is removed to help wide the airway. Included in this tissue is the uvula (thing that hangs down in the back of your throat), a large part of the soft palate, tonsils, adenoids & pharynx.
This wasn't a simple tonsillectomy; it was a much more complicated and risky surgery.
. . . that could have been avoided if her mother cooked her healthy food and exercised with her.
The longer Jahi stays on a ventilator, the more difficult it becomes to establish a cause of death, which is convenient for the family in any wrongful death lawsuit.
“Brain death was originally put in place for the very reason that it is possible, in many cases, to keep a heart beating long after the brain has died. To which most people agree there is no point.”
Yes. Note how you left out the last part of your thought as a given: most people agree their is no point in keeping the patient alive via artificial means - ie means normally con tolled by the nervous system.
Brain dead is not dead. There is no rigor mortis or other post-death events.
I am not arguing at all that she is not brain dead, or she could later survive without artificial support (nor the converse either).
Yet Childrens is actively, purposely obstructing this transfer of care to take place.
From the article
Straus, the hospital's lawyer, reiterated in his letter that the hospital would release the girl's body as soon as her family provided a detailed plan outlining how the move would be accomplished and written permission from the coroner. But he said neither has been submitted.
"No facility has stated, unconditionally or otherwise, that it is prepared to immediately accept Jahi's body," he wrote.
The whole situation hinges on whether she’s dead or alive, but nobody will give an answer to that question, or any of the surrounding questions which would make it possible to deduce whether she’s dead or alive. The condescending explanations of what brain death means are no help at all.
Additionally, they have not retained a surgeon willing to perform a tracheotomy.
Yet the first paragraph states:
“OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) A California hospital is unwilling to allow an outside doctor to fit a 13-year-old declared brain dead after tonsil surgery with the breathing and feeding tubes that would allow her to be safely transferred to another facility, its lawyer said Tuesday.”
So, which is it?