Doctors Want the Definition of Death Loosened Up

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The Uniform Determination of Death Act (UDDA) is the recommended legal statute for determining death in the United States and was initially formulated in 1981. Forty years later, because of the concerns of medicine, law, ethics, and philosophy experts, the Uniform Law Commission (ULC) created a drafting committee to update the UDDA. The drafting committee, which has until 2023 to propose revisions to the ULC Executive Committee, will need to determine how to address key questions about the UDDA.

The new proposed definition is dangerous. It’s a matter of choosing the word “permanent” over “irreversible.”

In practice, doctors examine only the brainstem and are not looking at the whole brain.  Lawyers are pointing this out to win lawsuits. So now, the American Academy of Neurology (AAN) is proposing updates.

To prevent lawsuits, the AAN is asking that the neurologic criteria of death be loosened and standardized.  They possibly want to harvest organs without being sued. I think this is true. In my personal experience, the doctors wanted to harvest the organs of a friend without even a brain scan. They also said he had a broken neck when he didn’t. The truck with the equipment to harvest organs was sitting outside, and the mad push was on.

Legal Insurrection reports that a new definition under review allows comatose patients to be declared dead. Their organs could then be harvested.

The UDDA states:

An individual who has sustained either irreversible cessation of circulatory and respiratory functions or irreversible cessation of all functions of the entire brain, including the brainstem, is dead. A determination of death must be made in accordance with accepted medical standards.”

Lawyers got together and came up with this definition:

An individual who has sustained either (a) permanent cessation of circulatory and respiratory functions or; (b) permanent coma, permanent cessation of spontaneous respiratory functions, and permanent loss of brainstem reflexes is dead. A determination of death must be made in accordance with accepted medical standards.

Heidi Klessig, M.D. (a retired anesthesiologist and pain management specialist) and Christopher W. Bogosh (a psychiatric mental health registered nurse) are observers of the Uniform Law Commission on the RUDDA in an article on American Thinker.

They sounded the alarm:

Notice that the new neurological standard under (b) does not use the term “irreversible,” nor does it include the loss of whole-brain function. The term “permanent” is being defined to mean that physicians do not intend to act to reverse the patient’s condition.

Thus, people in a coma whose prognosis is death will be declared dead under this new standard. An unresponsive person with a beating heart on a ventilator is not well, but he is certainly not dead!

This is based on proposals from the American Academy of Neurology (AAN).

In addition, the AAN proposes that there be no requirement for informed consent before initiating brainstem-reflex testing. This is a test that can harm the patients.


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