Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Ethics Committees and Blood Transfusions II

Rosemary Flanigan
April 7, 2009

Thanks to all of you who ruminated on the suggestion that ethics committees review orders for over 7 units of blood!! Those would have to be very special ethics committees and supported by a very special medical staff!!

John Carney said 2/3 of patients who didn’t want CPR, for example, “want other measures of life-sustaining treatments.”

So the question is, “How does the hospital respond in such cases?” And I would answer, “However the patient decides”—on the POLST or TPOPP forms where they list the “other measures” they want. Of course, this demands an institutional commitment and a medical staff commitment.

BUT it certainly calls for a literate, thoughtful patient-body!!!! And isn’t that what so many of us have been about these many years?

And not just us—but our surrogates as well.

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