Thursday, 10 December 2015

Discrimination in health care: 'do not resuscitate'

Instances of blatant and more casual discrimination against people with Down syndrome come to light every week, alongside reports of progress towards more inclusive communities. This one from the UK is worth noting because it probably happens much more often than is reported, and families need to be alert to the possibility at a time when a person with Down syndrome (or any disability) is particularly vulnerable:

Hospital sorry for 'do not resuscitate' order on patient with Down's Syndrome
Jane Dreaper, BBC News, 8th December 2015
A (UK) hospital trust has apologised for placing a "do not resuscitate" (DNR) order on a patient with Down's Syndrome - and listing his learning difficulties among the reasons for doing so ...
Down's Syndrome Association (UK) comment:
We are very disappointed to hear that Down’s syndrome has been listed as a reason for putting a “do not resuscitate” (DNR) order on the medical file of a vulnerable patient at the Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother Hospital in Margate, Kent. We had thought that this sort of discriminatory behaviour was a thing of the past. We hope that the media focus on this high profile case will ensure that there will be no further incidents of this nature ... Down's Syndrome Association (UK), on Facebook, 8th December 2015

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