Saturday, March 21, 2009

human rights

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/7956450.stm
I have been in many a situation when a child's ventilatory support has been removed. It is never an easy decision. It is always made with the parents and relatives fully informed and part of the decision. Doctors DO NOT remove ventilators because of cost! I watched in horror as Ruth Winston-Jones lamented the doctors who had looked after her child Luke. Accusing them of wanting him to die because of Money. He was costing too much to stay alive. Personally I would sue this embittered woman. What a wicked thing to insinuate.
As paediatric nurses we are our children's advocates. We will go where the parents dare not. I have questioned doctors, disagreed with things and bloody well told them. Parents are too close. Of course they don't want the child, not matter now fragile their cling to life, to die. I cannot begin to imagine the horror of losing your precious child. But sometimes the child's life is so horrific. Attached to a ventilator. Having air forced through your lungs. Noises lights everywhere. Drips and drugs. Having tubes inserted down your throat to suck out secretions. Where is the quality of life? There is no comparison to a normal child's life.
No hope of survival, no cure, just a parents love willing him to carry on as long as possible to delay the terrible pain of loss as long as possible. How can that be fair?
I feel deeply sad for them. They will, like Mrs Winston-Jones, never get over this. The hospital staff will feel like they have failed. Not failed in their care of the baby, but failed the parents. They weren't able to reach a joint decision that was to the best interest of their baby.
I'm just glad I'm not the one who has to remove the tubes.
Dx

2 comments:

Lily Wyte said...

You're a pediatric nurse, huh. Well you are allot braver than I am. I try not to remember the horrors of my pediatric rotation in nursing school. God bless you, and those like you, who can do it for the kids. I never could.

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