SEPTEMBER 2016

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Northern Irish man challenges Do Not Resuscitate Order


The BBC have reported the case of a man from County Antrim who was unaware a ‘Do Not Resuscitate’ (DNR) order had been placed on his medical notes upon admission to hospital. Paralysed from the waist down as a result of secondary progressive multiple sclerosis, 48 year old Neill Birnie has said he “feels his human rights have been violated.” @ The DNR was placed on his file after being admitted to hospital with pneumonia, with doctors telling him the decision was made in his best interest and after consultation with others. Neither Mr Birnie nor his sister gave their permission for the order to be placed on his file. When he was admitted for a second time, Mr Birnie found the DNR had not been removed. When making an official complaint several months later, Mr Birnie was told by the health trust concerned that his sister had been spoken to as he was so unwell. Mr Birnie said “[w]hat some of the doctors did was life-threatening and mentally cruel. I felt I had been tossed to the one side, I had no feelings of self worth.”