NHS England: A Call to Action
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Life Support

My cousin got in a car crash. He has bleeding on the brain. The doctors say he's brain dead and that there's no hope. They are saying that they want to turn off life support because "it's wasting their resources." I'm a believer in God and I believe that he could turn this around. Do the doctors really have the right to turn off the life support even though the family doesn't agree?

3 Replies

My deepest condolences to you. What a horrible situation. I know it's possibly the most distressing thing you will ever have to face, but I think you have to trust in the medical team looking after him to be not only the experts but to really know that there is no hope.

It's 100 percent normal to cling to hope to the last moment, but the kindest thing you can do for your cousin is to be brave and allow the life support to be switched off. Your cousin isn't feeling anything now, and won't when the machines are switched off. He will just slip away within a few minutes.

Do you know what your cousin's wishes were with regard to organ donation? One thing that can bring comfort in the weeks and months after his passing is to know that a little of him is living on in someone else. That's just another thought for you, and I know It's not for everyone.

The alternative to letting this happen is only to seek legal advice. That would probably mean months and even years of lawyers wrangling with doctors to keep your cousin on life support, with no good outcome, as he is really, to all intents and purposes, already gone from you.

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Thank you so much for replying. Yesterday we decided to let him go.. I'm just happy he's in a better place now.


My thoughts are with you. That was a really courageous decision but I'm sure it was the right one for him.


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