Family Fighting to Prevent Hospital from Turning off Life Support for 13 year old

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OAKLAND, Calif.  (CNN) –  A family is fighting for their 13-year-old, who was declared brain dead last week after undergoing surgery to remove her tonsils.

“I don’t want her off life support because I really feel like she can wake up,” Nailah Winkfield told CNN’s Piers Morgan. “I feel like it’s just been a rough week for her and, if they just give her some more time, then she’ll be able to wake up.”

Family members believe the mother of Jahi McMath should make the decision, not the staff at the children’s hospital where she is being treated.

McMath experienced complications after the surgery on December 9th, eventually went into cardiac arrest and suffered deprivation of oxygen to her brain.  Doctors said a CT scan revealed that two-thirds of Jahi’s brain was swollen and she is 100% brain damaged, or medically dead.

McMath’s family pursued help from the court system to keep the hospital from turning off her ventilator.  This week, the judge is expected to hear from an independent evaluator commenting on her McMath’s prognosis.

Read the entire article at CNN by clicking here.


  • Stephanie

    This story is so sad. And I agree with the family. If that was my child I would do anything in my power to keep them alive if I knew there could be a chance. And as for Tim who left that comment (neger dead pull the plug) GO TO HELL!!!

  • Farris K

    That “Tim” must be a Huntsville Hospital employee working on behalf of their management- Huntsville Hospital also has a record of creating lies just so that they can “pull the plug” on patients, declaring patients “brain-dead” so they can get away with murder.

  • Johnny

    As a APRN working in a Neuro-surgical intensive care unit you see this all the time with medically uneducated families. They don’t understand that once you see a midline shift and herniation on a CT scan – that is it. This precious young girl is dead. Everything that made her who she was is gone. This is surely a difficult blow for any family to swallow magnified due to her age and the time of the year this has taken place.

    The family is making this harder on themselves. The fact of the matter is, at the facility in which I work, we bill around 8k dollars a night for the room alone. That doesn’t include nurses, doctors, equipment, IV medications keeping her blood pressure up for organ perfusion etc etc – let alone precious real estate in a specialized ICU that people who have a fighting chance need and deserve.

    Admittedly, reading family comments about how the hospital essentially somehow caused this disappoints me. Every surgery whether its gallbladder surgery, tonsillectomy or sinus surgery carries with it significant risks that cannot be alleviated 100% even with the most advanced and prudent medical care. That is why we cover these risks with family and have consents signed. These complications are further increased when you are dealing with special populations of people such as the obese (this young girl) or the elderly etc etc. Their language hints that their mentality is such that they have been victimized somehow by the hospital and the care providers that served this young girl and her family. Chances are , this is incorrect.

    My heart goes out to this family and I wish upon them the ability to heal from this scar and move forward in a positive light. It is my hope that they are able to find peace.

    • Red

      So Johnny, after that ignorant rant, you don’t have the conviction to just state flat out that this girl and this family were NOT victimized by this hospital? The BEST you can do is say “chances are?” Really?

      I got sick to my stomach to see you refer to a bed in the ICU as “precious” real estate. The ONLY thing that is precious in a hospital are the PATIENTS.

      • Johnny

        I apologize if I offended you but you have no idea what goes on begin the scenes of a specialized icu. For example, if you were to fall and sustain a sub arachnoid bleed and needed an emergent burr hole/ Evd placement to relieve and regulate pressure to save your life …. No where else in the hospital is cipher system certified. You HAVE to come to my unit and we are the only ones hospital wide qualified to manage your care. That is what I was referencing red.

        Furthermore, I say ” chances are” because we are all human and mistakes do happen. Clearly I do not know the intimate details of what happened to this young girl from the beginning to end of her surgery and beyond.

        Sometimes it is hard to read tone and intent in simple text so please do not mistake mine as something that it is not. Having said that, please tell me how what I wrote was ignorant and a rant.

      • Red

        Ok. Easy. It was ignorant, because you completely miss the point. A childs life is worth vastly more than the inconvenience encountered by you or your co-workers, the cost of a position in the ICU or any of that. I am not impressed by your jargon either. You think your position is valid, and even if you do make valid points, you miss the real point. And that is, this family deserves some patience and the chance to come to their conclusions without being forced into it by people like you and other Hospital representatives.

      • Johnny

        “A childs life is worth vastly more than the inconvenience encountered by you or your co-workers”

        There is no inconvenience– I / We consider it a privilege and an honor to be able to be there when patients and their families need help the most. That is something that does not waiver, even on the days you are moving constantly 12-13 hours straight without food, drink, or bathroom breaks because you admitted a fresh head trauma.

        I think this boils down to differing opinions in relation to when life begins/ends. In this case it is my unsolicited opinion that this child is already gone. Everything that makes her who she is died when her brain ceased to function. I vehemently agree with you that the family deserves time but there is a line to be drawn. Where you or I would draw that line versus anyone else are going to be different distances in the sand.

        At any rate, I hope the holidays treated you and yours well. God bless.

  • valerie

    As a mother of three precious lives I would have to agree with the family whether or not she is medically gone. That is their child and this tragedy came out of nowhere. Money is no option when it is your child’s life. I would be in debt to my eyes if it meant saving my kids. Keeping her and her family and friends in my prayers!!!

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