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Fury at ‘do not resuscitate’ notices given to Covid patients with learning disabilities


People with learning disabilities have been given do not resuscitate orders during the second wave of the pandemic, in spite of widespread condemnation of the practice last year and an urgent investigation by the care watchdog.

Mencap said it had received reports in January from people with learning disabilities that they had been told they would not be resuscitated if they were taken ill with COVID-19.

The Care Quality Commission (CQC) said in December that inappropriate Do Not Attempt Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (DNACPR) notices had caused potentially avoidable deaths last year.

DNACPRs are usually made for people who are too frail to benefit from CPR, but Mencap said some seem to have been issued for people simply because they had a learning disability. The CQC is due to publish a report on the practice within weeks.

The disclosure comes as campaigners put growing pressure on ministers to reconsider a decision not to give people with learning disabilities priority for vaccinations. There is growing evidence that even those with a mild disability are more likely to die if they contract the coronavirus.

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Source: The Guardian, 13 February 2021

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This is a deeply disturbing story. I await the CQC report, and more importantly what happens as a result.

The endless round of investigations, inquiries, recommendations, action plans, reorganisations, appointment of commissioners or 'Tsars' and the associated spin followed by  little or no real change needs to end. Implementation is key.


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