Jehovah’s Witness ‘within rights’ to refuse blood transfusion
Eloise Dupuis, 27, died in Quebec in 2016 of multiple organ failure following complications from a Caesarean section.
As a Jehovah’s Witness, she repeatedly told hospital staff she did not want to receive a blood transfusion.
She refused treatment even as doctors warned she would die without it. She died nearly a week after giving birth.
Refusal of blood transfusions key to deaths of 2 Jehovah’s Witnesses
A Quebec coroner has found that the refusal of blood transfusions played a key role in the deaths of two Jehovah’s Witnesses who died of childbirth complications last year.
Dr. Luc Malouin looked into the deaths of Mirlande Cadet, 46, and Éloïse Dupuis, 26, after they died in separate incidents at hospitals in Montreal and Quebec City.
Blood transfusions are forbidden under Jehovah’s Witness doctrine, which holds that the Old and New Testaments command them to abstain from blood. Quebec law upholds the right of adult Jehovah’s Witnesses to refuse blood as long as their decision is considered “free” and “informed.” Continue reading
Jehovah’s Witness dies after refusing blood transfusion during major operation
A Jehovah’s Witness lost her life after she refused a blood transfusion during a major hip operation due to her religious beliefs.
Barbara Mortimer, 69, went against doctors’ advice and sadly died on May 24, 2017, shortly after a hip replacement. Continue reading
Jehovah’s Witness dies after refusing blood transfusion during operation
Barbara Mortimer, 69, of Portland Road, died on May 24, 2017, at the Rivers Hospital in Sawbridgeworth, shortly after a hip replacement.
A Jehovah’s Witness from Bishop’s Stortford lost her life after refusing a blood transfusion in accordance with her religious beliefs – despite advice from doctors.
Death of a Jehovah’s witness mother : aunt Eloise Dupuis continues battle
More than a year after the death of the young woman of 26 years old, the coroner Luc Malouin has filed its report on Friday. He is currently in the hands of the chief coroner and should be made public at the beginning of the month of November, according to Mr. Malouin. Continue reading
Children can decide their medical treatments under Victoria’s unique advance directive laws
For instance, in Sydney a 17-year-old boy refused to receive blood transfusions because of his beliefs as a Jehovah’s Witness. The judge overruled the child’s decision after having considered preserving his life was was more powerful than respect for the boy’s faith.
A similar case occurred in England in 1993. Here, a 15-year-old boy, whom the judge described as “intelligent”, refused a blood transfusion as part of treatment for leukaemia for religious reasons. The judge deemed him incompetent to make such a decision because the boy couldn’t understand the pain he would suffer, the fear of dying, and distress caused to his family. Continue reading
What should doctors do when parents request ‘second best’ treatments for their children?
There has been research into the ethics of parental refusal of treatment, for example, Jehovah’s Witness parents who refuse a blood transfusion for their children. In cases where the life of the child is at risk, it is widely accepted that doctors should over-ride parents’ wishes.
But the question of what doctors should do when parents are not refusing treatment, rather requesting a substitute ‘second best’ treatment, has attracted less attention. Continue reading
A Quebec judge has decided that a 14-year-old Jehovah’s Witness who has cancer must undergo blood transfusions, despite her expressed wishes not to receive them.
The teenager, who is not named, learned in June that she has Hodgkin’s lymphoma, a rare form of cancer that affects the white blood cells. It has an excellent survival rate, if treated early.
The treatment involves chemotherapy, which often requires blood transfusions. But as a Jehovah’s Witness, the girl’s faith states that it is against God’s wishes to consume or be transfused with any blood. Continue reading
14-year-old Jehovah’s Witness forced to receive blood transfusion
A judge authorized a Montreal hospital to perform blood transfusions to treat a 14-year-old female Jehovah’s Witness with cancer, despite the girl’s refusal “even if it kills me.”
In authorizing the transfusions, the tribunal underlined that it is adhering to laws protecting children, “sometimes against their own wishes” when those decisions could prove fatal.
The girl had turned 14 just three months before becoming aware of her condition, and dreamed of becoming a music teacher. In his decision, Judge Lukasz Granosik of the Superior Court described her as “a big girl, bright and articulate,” who does very well at school and “exhibits a maturity above her biological age in terms of her behaviour.” Continue reading