Jump to content

Covid patients wrongly issued with ‘do not resuscitate’ orders, watchdog finds

Doctors made do-not-resuscitate orders for elderly and disabled patients during the pandemic without the knowledge of their families, breaching their human rights, a parliamentary watchdog has said.

In a new report on breaches of the orders during the pandemic, the Parliamentary Health Service Ombudsman (PHSO) found failings from at least 13 patient complaints.

The research, carried out with the charity Dignity in Dying, found “unacceptable” failures in how end-of-life care conversations are held, and in particular with elderly and disabled patients.

Following a review of complaints in 2019 and 2020 the PHSO found evidence in some cases that doctors did not even inform the patient or their family that a notice had been made and so breached their human rights.

The report calls for health services in Britain to improve the approach by medics in talking about death and end-of-life care.

In examples of cases reviewed, the PHSO revealed the story of 58-year-old Sonia Deleon who had schizophrenia and learning disabilities and a notice which was wrongly applied during the pandemic.

In 2020, she was admitted to Southend University Hospital after contracting Covid-19 at age 58. On three occasions a notice was made but her family were never informed.

Following Sonia’s death her family found out the reasons given by doctors for the DNAR which “included frailty, having a learning disability, poor physiological reserve, schizophrenia and being dependent for daily activities.”

Sonia’s sister Sally-Rose Cyrille said: “I was devastated, shocked and angry. The fact that multiple notices had been placed in Sone’s file without consultation with us, without our knowledge, it was like being hit with a sledgehammer.

Read full story

Source: The Independent, 14 March 2024


Recommended Comments

There are no comments to display.

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
  • Create New...