Well apparently we don’t have a corner on the market for committing malpractice. This deadly incident -reported on February 7, 2010 – occurred in Derbyshire, which is in the north midlands of England.
What occurred? I truly can’t recount this any better than the reporter, who wrote the article:
A patient who suffered a heart attack on a hospital ward died because clerical staff had mistakenly inserted a ‘Do Not Attempt Resuscitation’ form into his medical notes.
Peter Clarke was not treated by doctors after going into cardiac arrest as a nurse had spotted the form in his files and, even though it was blank and had not been filled in, told other ward staff he should not be revived.
The blunder emerged at an inquest into the incident at Derby Hospitals NHS Trust, where bosses revealed staff had been ‘routinely’ placing the forms alongside medical records before they had been correctly signed and witnessed by senior doctors.
Before you wind-up having ‘no say’ in whether you get to live or die should catastrophic injury strike, you should consider (a) having a living will/advance directive and (b) at least discussing with your loved ones what you want done by way of medical intervention, if anything, should you wind-up in a state such a coma or a persistent vegetative state – to name just a few. – truly opt for the former but don’t be afraid to engage in the latter.
An order for DNR (do not resuscitate)is an extraordinary measure. Think clearly and long about your decision, but once made, let it be known.
Last bit of advice: check what’s on the nursing station desk next to your medical record before you get in bed.