Illustrative image for It Is Time to Abandon the Dogma that Brain Death Is Biological Death

Hastings Center Report

It Is Time to Abandon the Dogma that Brain Death Is Biological Death

Abstract: Drawing on a recent case report of a pregnant, brain-dead woman who gave birth to a healthy child after over seven months of intensive care treatment, this essay rejects the established doctrine in medicine that brain death constitutes the biological death of the human being. The essay describes three policy options with respect to determination of death and vital organ transplantation in the case of patients who are irreversibly comatose but remain biologically alive.

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