A research has found that policies to find out brain death vary extensively from one hospital to another. It has suggested that there are lapses in the policies. Despite the existence of national standards, the rules to establish brain death differ widely from hospital to hospital.
The research has discovered that the hospital policies to determine brain death are astonishingly conflicting and don’t comply with parameters decided by health authorities.
The American Academy of Neurology (AAN) came up with a clear and detailed set of guidelines in 2010 to differentiate a brain-dead patient from one who might come out of coma. The motive behind the written guidelines was to make judgment 100% accurate and to make one completely confident on whatever call is made.
However, researchers have discovered lapses in the policies, though they have found legitimate reports of any patient ever being marked as brain dead when the case was not true actually. Even then, it is must that doctors make evaluations with total certainty.
Lead study author, David Greer, a neurologist from Yale University, said, “That's why we want to provide a very high level of accountability for this, and that's why we created the guidelines to be so specific, so straightforward and cookbook”.
With a motive to determine how well the guidelines have been adopted, researchers reviewed the brain death policies of 508 hospitals. The hospitals represented a majority of the hospitals in all 50 states that have the permission and are well equipped to conclude brain death in a patient.