Calif. Family Struggles to Get Surgeries for Brain Dead Teen

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Straus, the hospital’s lawyer, reiterated in his letter that the hospital would release the girl’s body as soon as her family provided a detailed plan outlining how the move would be accomplished and written permission from the coroner. But he said neither has been submitted.

“No facility has stated, unconditionally or otherwise, that it is prepared to immediately accept Jahi’s body,” he wrote.

Jahi underwent a tonsillectomy and related procedures at Children’s Hospital on Dec. 9 to treat sleep apnea. Her family said she went into cardiac arrest after she started coughing up blood in the recovery room. She was declared brain dead three days later. The hospital then moved to take her off the machines that are keeping her heart and lungs going a few days before Christmas.

Doctors at Children’s Hospital and an independent pediatric neurologist from Stanford University have concluded Jahi is brain dead.

Her family, citing religious beliefs and the hope that she will pull through, wants to continue life support. Alameda County Superior Court Judge Evelio Grillo initially ruled that doctors could remove her from the ventilator at 5 p.m. Monday, but two hours before the deadline gave the family another week to find a place to move her.

Straus filed papers Monday in both the state appeals court and in a federal court where Jahi’s mother also has sued. He is opposing the family’s request for an emergency order to keep Jahi on a ventilator indefinitely.

“The Superior Court correctly concluded, after three days of hearings and based on uncontroverted evidence, that Ms. McMath is, sadly, deceased,” the papers state. “Turning off a ventilator that assists in delivery of oxygen of a dead person causes no irreparable harm — regardless of the parental or religious beliefs of the decedent’s family.”

The federal court has said it does not plan to act on the request until the case has worked its way through the state courts.

(AP Photo: Omari Sealey makes a statement for the media on the condition of his niece Jahi McMath on Monday, Dec. 30, 2013, in Oakland, Calif.)

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5 thoughts on “Calif. Family Struggles to Get Surgeries for Brain Dead Teen

  1. It’s disturbing that Jahi, is referred to as “a body,” in this article. This just add more tragedy to an exasperating situation!

  2. I feel for her family. I had to make the same heartbreaking decision about my precious sister. It was hard, but the look of total peace on her face when that flat red line ran across that monitor also immediately put me at peace. Sometimes we have to put our own selfish thoughts aside and do what is best for the person whom we want so badly to hold onto. I pray for strength and peace for her family.

  3. Kylie. true that Benjamin`s comment is unimaginable… last tuesday I got a great new Infiniti since I been bringin in $9136 this – four weeks past and-a little over, $10,000 this past month. without a doubt its the best job I’ve had. I started this five months/ago and practically straight away startad bringin in at least $70… per-hr. look these up……..

  4. This is outrageous! The child is dead. There is no surgery to be done. Unplug that machine and watch what happens. If the heart is the battery of life, the brain is the CPU or transmission that makes the body operate. She is brain-dead, meaning she can no longer function…no movement, no thinking, no heart beat on its own, no breathing, no seeing, NOTHING. Let her rest in peace.

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