There comes a time in every persons life when they know the end is near, and the most common wish is to die with dignity and with as less of pain as possible.
Yet often at times like these, it is the near and dear ones who become the decision makers, and they may not understand what to do best in these situations.
To better understand this, from the medical point of view, this is what usually happens if the relatives with to for no intensive care for their terminally ill relatives.
Doctors explain that the relatives sign a DNR request, which means Do Not Resuscitate.
The EMFI, a Christian Healthcare Network in India, has long promoted the use of a better alternative, called AND, which simply means Allow Natural Death.
There was an interesting article published recently which said that “More family members choose to “allow natural death” for patients”
How doctors frame the patient’s situation can also affect the decisions made by their family. Researchers in the United States examined if the family members of a critically ill patient will go for cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) when doctors change how the situation is conveyed. 60% of the participants chose to allow the patient receive CPR if their heart stops, instead of the “Do Not Resuscitate” (DNR) order. However, it decreased to 49% when doctors framed DNR as “allow natural death”. The researchers noted that phrasing the choice as “allowing natural death” might reduce the family’s feelings of guilt, as DNR might invoke a sense of taking something away from the patient by not choosing to act.
Despite the availability of healthcare information online, most patients still rely on healthcare professionals to explain their health condition. The words that the healthcare professionals use, and the social norms invoked by their words, do have subtle influence on how people perceive a situation. Thus, healthcare professionals should take note of the words they use, especially when it is a life-or-death decision. [http://www.upmc.com/media/NewsReleases/2013/Pages/doctors-choice-of-words-influence-cpr-decision.aspx]
We at Shalom Life care believe that every human being is created in the image of God, and is worthy of respect and dignity till the very end of life. We support the use of AND and involve relatives in the care of their near and dear ones till the very end.
We also believe that there is a life after death, for which this life is but a preparation. Are you prepared?