Religion of 2014-01-08

Woman dies for refusing blood transfusion

A 21-year-old woman (name withheld) who had severe anaemia has died at the Effia-Nkwanta Regional Hospital following her refusal to have blood transfusion because of her religious beliefs.

The deceased, a member of the Jehovah’s Witness Sect, was brought to the Hospital by her parents and twin sister after falling unconscious and died on January 3.

Speaking to the GNA in Takoradi Dr. Henry Ata-Wurah, Acting Medical Director of the Hospital, said it was unethical to dispense haemoglobin to an adult against his/her religious belief or wish.

He said the Hospital authorities would only explain the consequences of refusing blood transfusion to the patient for him/her to make a choice and that a doctor could dispense haemoglobin to a patient without his/her consent only when that person is a child.

Dr Ata-Wura said a patient could suffer cardiac failure when the haemoglobin level was low as the heart would not be able to circulate sufficient oxygen to the various parts of the body.

A member of the Jehovah’s Witness Sect told the GNA that the Bible prohibited ingesting blood and that Christians should therefore not accept blood transfusion.

Mr. Frank Amevor said life was a gift from God therefore those who loved life should not sustain it by blood transfusion, adding “It is a non-negotiable religious stand. Blood is life and sacred to God.”