Year: 2010 Source: Psychosomatics, v.51, no.4, (July-August 2010), p.277-282 SIEC No: 20110084

The authors review the literature related to patients who obtain a Do-Not-Resuscitate order in preparation for a suicide attempt & the ethical issues involved in mkaing a decision to resuscitate or not in these cases. The authors address the potential legal consequences of action or inaction & clinical issues to consider before such an order is issued. Do-not-resuscitate laws do not take into account the situation of the mentally ill person framing a do-not-resuscitate order as a preparation for suicide. The article recommends screening for suicide ideation before issuing do-not-resuscitate orders, having clear hospital policies regarding the honouring of these orders if suicide is attempted, & clarification of state do-not-resuscitate laws regarding suicide. (29 refs.) JA