Anticipatory care plans and end of life care

6) Resuscitation

Close up of a cardiac monitor

© Crown copyright 2009

Your healthcare team will consider resuscitation on an individual basis. There are two reasons why CPR would not be attempted:

  1. If you have made an advanced decision about refusing cardio pulmonary resuscitation (CPR).
    This means that if your heart stops you  would not want the medical staff to make efforts to get it to restart.  If you have capacity you will have discussions with the healthcare team. You can ask for a second opinion. If you do not have capacity but have arranged a welfare power of attorney, they or your immediate family will be involved in these discussions on your behalf. If you do not have a power of attorney the healthcare team are responsible for making a decision based on all the information they have available at the time you require resuscitation. If CPR would not be successful for clinical /medical reasons, you or your family/power of attorney cannot demand that you must be resuscitated.
  2. If the doctors don’t think CPR would be successful, they will tell you
    Lung damage and some other medical conditions can make it far less likely that you would be resuscitated successfully without further medical complications or disability.