Quadriplegic Patient Not Given Life Support

A nurse in an Intensive Care Unit (ICU) denied getting orders for not to resuscitate a quadriplegic patient from physicians who have been accused of planned killing of the patient.

She said to the Court headed by Judge Maher Salama Al Mahdi that she worked with the Emergency Assistance division of the ICU and frequently helped revive the quadriplegic patient.

She testified that when the patient flipped over from side to side, his heart would always stop, there was no direct instruction about lifting life support. She also said that a lot of doctors had discussed regarding the matter.

Based on the records, physicians at Rashid hospital known as MOK, 49, Indian, and EE, 50, Austrian are charged with planned killing of a quadriplegic patient as a result of not giving him the CPR that was needed when he went through a heart attack last February 21, 2009.

As leader of the Intensive Care Unit, EE is charged of handing out order on not giving CPR to the patient should he have a heart attack, thereby planning to kill him as an unavoidable outcome to his orders and deeds.

The Prosecution likewise charged the leader of the ICU for insisting to attain his goal with every means in spite of the opposition of the medical team. He was able to take away the devices that were connected to the patient required to rescue him, along with the oxygen monitor and the alarm. He is also charged of raising the morphine rate that was given to the patient and decreasing the oxygen rate given to him.

The ICU physician on duty, MOK, agreed with EE, and avoided providing CPR to the patient who experienced a heart attack, based on the records.

The two physicians refused the allegations when showing up before the Court.

The records state that the heartbeat of the patient slowed down slowly until it stopped so that he died, as revealed in his medical file.

50-year-old Syrian doctor Yaser Ahmad Masri bore witness that EE had set verbal instructions to the nursing team to not give CPR or medical assistance to Ghulam Mohammed, the patient, should he have a heart attack, thereby planning to kill him.

According to Masri, one day before the incident, the patient underwent a heart attack and the physician on duty MOK avoided providing him CPR according to the order of EE. He said that he was adamant that the patient should be rescued if he goes through a heart attack, so he was given all the required equipment and medication. However, EE got there a day prior to the patient’s death and took away all the equipment, and MOK, on duty that time, did not give him the needed CPR.

50-year-old Egyptian Intensive Care Consultant Ashraf Mahmoud Al Hofi testified that he was a leader of a medical committee that was set to examine the patient’s death.

The committee arrived at EE giving verbal directive as well as indirect orders to not provide the patient CPR or any other medical measure of support, going against the medical regulations.

According to Al Hofi, there were some notes in the file of the deceased that backed this. The patient was not dead clinically, but was in fact conscious, and the death resulted from him not receiving any CPR when he underwent a heart attack according to the instructions given by EE, and MOK was accountable as well since he implemented the orders, he continued.

40-year-old Pakistani ICU nurse Amin Najmi, testified that on the date of the event, he received the shift from another nurse who said to him that the physicians committee have decided not to provide the patient with CPR in the event of a heart attack.

Najmi testitfied that the patient did have a heart attack, and that he notified the doctor on duty, MOK, who said to him that giving the patient CPR is not allowed, and when asking why this was, the doctor replied that it was their decision and then got out of the nursing room.

30-year-old Indian nurse Marline Shakoshan gave the same testimonies and further supplied that EE gave orders to take away the oxygen monitor device at the time when the patient’s status needed monitoring of the oxygen rate in his blood. This device is likewise connected to the alarm, which was not active also.

She testified that she has written on the file of the patient that CPR was not given according to the order of EE, and that doctor MOK denied the patient CPR in accordance with those orders.

The trial supplied the court with technical proofs which includes choices taken by EE which were a breach of procedural, administrative, and clinical terms, as well as immoral, despite of the justification given by the accused.

MOK confessed that the order of not providing CPR to the patient was set by EE and were made known to the nursing team. EE was ready to kill the patient, he went on.

The files cited that EE got into the patient’s room at the last part of the working day prior to the weekend and took away all the devices that were connected to the patient. By doubling the speed of the morphine provided to the patient, it aimed to keep from revealing the worsening status of the patient.

EE was eager to take away the alarm that was connected to the patient to ensure that no alarm will be there in case of an emergency and so that no one would give the required support, based on the prosecution notes.

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