Who Pays? Brain-Dead Girl To Be Kept On Life Support (After Her Actually Not-So-Routine Tonsillectomy)
Tragic story -- a 13-year-old girl went into hospital for a (supposedly -- see below) "routine tonsillectomy," and something went terribly wrong. The hospital called the procedure a "complicated" one. The girl is now brain dead.
Terry Collins wrote on December 21st for the AP that her family fought in court -- and won a restraining order against the hospital -- in their battle to keep her on life support:
"Ms. McMath is dead and cannot be brought back to life," the hospital said in the memo, adding: "Children's is under no legal obligation to provide medical or other intervention for a deceased person."
The family filed a request Friday for a temporary restraining order prohibiting the hospital from taking Jahi off life support or any of her other current treatment.
At the hearing later, the hospital's attorney, Doug Straus, said two doctors unaffiliated with the hospital examined Jahi and concluded that she was brain dead. But he said, "We're happy to cooperate with the judge's suggestion that an independent expert be provided to confirm yet again that brain death is the outcome that has occurred here."
The family's attorney, Christopher Dolan, said the family wanted independent tests of their own because they do not believe the hospital's physicians are sufficiently independent.
The deadline has now been extended to January 7.
Brain death is "the irreversible end of brain activity (including involuntary activity necessary to sustain life) due to total necrosis of the cerebral neurons following loss of brain oxygenation. It should not be confused with a persistent vegetative state."
About that supposedly "routine tonsillectomy" theden.tv reports:
Every single report states that it is a simple tonsillectomy, but that is not the whole truth. The media knows this, but fails to report it and continues the charade. The court documents state that it was far more involved. This is not a simple tonsils-out-and-ice-cream-later procedure but a uvulopalatopharyngoplasty (UP3). The AP and Huffpo call it a simple tonsillectomy despite there being court documents that show it was a UP3. A UP3 is invasive, risky and comes with complications, per the NY Times and many sleep disorder forums. They want you to think this was just a tonsillectomy to help the eventual shakedown by the family with this lawyer's help because readers will be shocked to think someone could die from a tonsillectomy.
A simple question no media member is asking is why a thirteen-year-old is getting a UP3. A UP3 is a surgery to help people suffering from sleep apnea. They never say she suffered from sleep apnea, because to mention it would distort the narrative. How is a thirteen-year-old already suffering from sleep apnea? Google Image search results show Jahi McMath as obese.
This is the world of obese America, where we see a rise in sleep apnea due to 1/3 of the US being overweight and 1/3 being obese. You probably have a family member with one of those sleep masks to keep an oxygen flow going, and they are probably overweight. This should not affect a thirteen-year-old. Kids are developing not only adult problems, but problems that only fat adults have.
The greater conversation is about obesity and the culpability of the obese themselves. There are money quotes from the mother of McMath about her child being perfectly fine before going to that hospital, but no one bothers to mention her daughter being obese to the point of needing surgery to prevent her from dying in her sleep. Obese is not fine. Maybe they did try a weight loss program, and momma didn't 'mom up' and work hard on getting her kid in shape.
All surgery comes with risk, and obesity sets up people for long term health problems.
And it increases the risks from surgery.