A UK NGO reveals that guidelines have been given to prevent people with intellectual disabilities from being resuscitated in the event of cardiopulmonary failure related to covid-19, reports The Guardian. Mencap, an organization that helps Brits with pathologies like Down’s syndrome, said it received complaints in January about people with intellectual disabilities who were told that they would not be resuscitated if they were put in one due to being infected with the coronavirus critical condition would occur.
This Saturday’s news is especially important considering that according to figures released by the UK Statistics Bureau last week, six out of ten Covid-19-related deaths in England were from people with a disability.
The UK’s Commission on the Quality of Medical Care (CQC) had already stated in December that in 2020 the order not to use cardiopulmonary resuscitation maneuvers in some patients will cause potentially preventable deaths, especially among residents of residential homes, the Guardian quotes.
These non-resuscitation orders, which are usually attached to the records of patients with a health condition too fragile to support cardiopulmonary resuscitation maneuvers, are only issued in certain cases because patients have an intellectual disability, he said.
Mencap Executive Director Edel Harris told the newspaper that “during the pandemic, many people with cognitive difficulties faced shocking discrimination and barriers to accessing health care.”
Associations defending the rights of people with disabilities have put pressure on the UK government to prioritize the vaccination program for people with cognitive difficulties, considering the increase in studies pointing to a higher chance of death from coronavirus infection Clues.