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What does a ‘Do Not Attempt Resuscitation’ order mean?

Do you know what a ‘Do Not Attempt Resuscitation’ order truly means on your LPA?

| Published on October 23, 2020

A BBC news article has highlighted that ‘Do Not Attempt Resuscitation Orders’ are lodged with significant numbers of medical records. This is eye-opening and this article is worth a read:Do-not-resuscitate order: care home use reviewed

What does this order mean?

It is good to see that this questionable practice is being challenged. We certainly see situations with clients having D.N.A.R on their records when they do not truly appreciate the implications. Similarly, we encounter confusion with some of our clients who believe that having a D.N.A.R lodged on their medical records negates the need to think about life-sustaining treatment decisions on an LPA (Lasting Power of Attorney).

A D.N.A.R is not the same as a life-sustaining treatment decision, which can arise in a variety of situations and not only a cardiac event.

The issues surrounding who should make life-sustaining treatment decisions for you require discussion and serious consideration. Who should make such a life and death decision? Would you prefer the treating medical team to decide whether to end your life or not, or would you prefer to choose a person that knows you and can be trusted to represent your views robustly in a very stressful situation?

Do you have any preconceived ideas about how you would like to be treated at the end of your life and do your family or loved ones know about these? Do you talk regularly or do you find that your family shy away from discussions like this A Health and Welfare LPA can be prepared to cover all eventualities and give you control about decisions that would be made about you if you lacked the capacity.

Contact the Humphries Kirk team for help

We can help discuss all of the issues relevant to this and assist in navigating the minefield that is Health and Welfare LPAs and the associated discussions with those closest to you.

For further information, please contact Chris Keenan in the Private Client team on 01305 251007 or email c.keenan@hklaw.uk. Humphries Kirk LLP has offices in Wareham, Dorchester, Parkstone, Bournemouth, Poole, Swanage and Crewkerne.

This article is for general information only and does not constitute legal or professional advice. Please note that the law may have changed since this article was published.

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