Moral Dilemma; Do Not Resuscitate!

Moral Dilemma; Do Not Resuscitate!
December 08
17:01 2017

Moral Dilemma; A Problem of the Tattoo Variety:

A moral dilemma, most of us will come across these several times in our lives. When it comes to people that work in law enforcement, politics, justice system or indeed with saving lives, they might happen more often than they do for most people. Recently a very specific moral dilemma that got into the news, caught our eye.

Some of our fans may know these kinds of tattoos, that have to do with life or death situations. Instructions for how to assist and save people. Indeed the opposite purpose for these tattoos, also exists. There are several case with people getting tattoos such as “do not resuscitate” tattooed on them, often somewhere easily visible.

So the moral dilemma then comes int question, when this tattoos purpose comes into effect. In other words, what do you do when a person with such a tattoo, is in need of life saving treatment or help?

Ethical Guidance; The Doctors Needed Help:

Indeed, as it happened in the story that hit the news last week, the doctors didn’t know what to do, when a man came in with a “do not resuscitate tattoo” on his chest. The man was in life threatening danger, after stabilizing him, the doctors did not know, whether they should safe his life or not.

Several factors came into play; How would they know the tattoo was genuine and sincere, in other words that the purpose of the tattoo was what might first be assumed. Secondly, there is the vow of medical porfessionals (in most countries), to always do all they can to safe an individuals life. Thirdly and lastly, there was the whole fact of whether it is ethically responsible, to basically assist in the mans death/suicide.

For some countries where assisted suicide is legal, the third one isn’t of much concern. But these doctors needed ethical advice and the help of people that knew the man, to ascertain that he genuinely because of his medical history, did not want any resuscitation. Thus they ended up letting the man pass away.

Final Comments:

Some of you guys, may have a hard time seeing the dilemma here, because it seems that most people getting such a serious tattoo, would have thought it through? Sadly that is not the case, as there have been reports of people, particularly one man from Miami, who had the same tattoo. In this case doctors opted to save the man’s lie in spite of his tattoo. The man later explained, that his tattoo was not sincere, it was gotten after a drunken bet with a friend one day many years ago.

The moral of this story, seems to be to not take chances with these tattoos. If you want to get a tattoo of this type, be serious about the request, because once you are gone, it can’t be changed.

We hoped you enjoyed this article, despite it’s perhaps bit grim subject matter. please don’t forget to follow us on Facebook, YouTube and Instagram (@Mediazink_Official), for more awesome articles and other content.

About Author



Mads W. K. Masters of science in Sociology (Cand. Scient. Soc.), from the University of Copenhagen, who specializes in embodiment sociology, but especially in tattoos and tattoo culture etc.

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