Many years ago I was working in a restaurant kitchen in London. I had done long hours that week and was very tired. I had to be up early the next morning and was dreading sleeping in as I had something important happening.
So I devised a foolproof method of hearing my alarm clock. I taped my retro-looking wind-up alarm clock to the cabinet by my bed and inserted a stick in the wind-up key. From the stick I hung a bundle of kitchen forks dangling down on string. The forks were hanging over a carefully balanced stack of biscuit tins. The plan was that the clock would go off, the wind key would turn releasing the stick, dropping the forks onto the tins and the racket would wake me up.
Did I sleep it? No! I dreaded the expected racket so much that I hardly slept at all.
Imagine how Zach Dunlop felt when he awoke. He’ll be glad he woke up when he did. Zach, 21, was declared brain dead by doctors and about to have his organs removed for transplant. He says he remembers hearing doctors pronouncing him dead at a hospital in Texas. But he then started to show signs of life by moving his hand and foot. He is now recovering well at home.
I wonder if anyone has heard themselves being pronounced dead and been unable to move. Then hearing that their organs are to be removed for transplant have been unable to cry out. Perhaps they have been alive when the transplant surgery started on them.
Could be possible that somewhere people are pronounced dead falsely deliberately to secure organs for transplant?
In this country, in January the Prime Minister backed calls for the whole population to be automatically registered for organ donation, unless they actively choose to opt out.
The Christian Institute has responded by warning that organs may be harvested from patients who were not yet dead as doctors are keen to take organs from a body with a beating heart because the removal of the heart, lungs, liver, pancreas and kidneys must be done before they begin to deteriorate. circulation.
Secular ethicist Professor Peter Singer of Princeton University has said, “Defining such people as dead was a convenient way around the problems of making their organs available for transplantation, and withdrawing treatment from them.”
Medical ethicist, Michael Potts, has said: “Since the patient is not truly dead until his or her organs are removed, it is the process of organ donation itself that causes the donor’s death.”
Dr Margaret Cook, a former consultant haematologist at St John’s Hospital, West Lothian, wrote on the issue last year in The Daily Telegraph: “We must exercise our democratic rights to prevent them from imposing coercive measures.
“How can we be sure, if this proposal became law, that there would not be undue pressure to be less stringent on declaring a potential donor brain-dead? That there would not be more misguided attempts to liberalise the laws on euthanasia?”
In her article, Melanie Phillips sounds the alarm. She says:
All the evidence suggests that organs are harvested not from the dead but from the dying. In other words, at the time the organs are removed the patients are still alive.
This is because, in these cases, the criterion doctors use to decide that someone has died is the death of the brain stem. This is said to be “brain death”, and thus death itself.
However, it does not follow at all that the rest of the brain has also ceased to function. Yet no tests are carried out on other parts of the brain to establish whether all activity there has actually ceased or not.
As a result, people are declared dead while their heart is still beating unassisted and blood is still circulating round the body. Most of us would think such patients are not dead but very much alive.
Indeed former transplant doctors, who became so horrified by the implications of what they were doing that they abandoned the practice, say that organs for transplant are only viable if the donor is still alive – since when the body is really dead the organs become useless to anyone else, as they die too.
Wow Zach! I bet you are relieved.
For more see the article at The Christian Institute.