Opinion: A 'code death' for dying patients

New York Times, April 11, 2014

Sadly, but with conviction, I recently removed breathing tubes from three patients in intensive care. As an I.C.U. doctor, I am trained to save lives. Yet the reality is that some of my patients are beyond saving. And while I can use the tricks of my trade to keep their bodies going, many will never return to a quality of life that they, or anyone else, would be willing to accept. I was trained to use highly sophisticated tools to rescue those even beyond the brink of death. But I was never trained how to unhook these tools. I never learned how to help my patients die.


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