Do You Know Your Options?
Bloodless surgery is being performed at an increasing number of medical centers around the world. Are you fully informed of the options that are available in the field of bloodless medicine? You need to know so that you can make informed decisions involving medical treatment and surgery. Watch the video No Blood—Medicine Meets the Challenge. Afterward, prayerfully review what you learned with the help of the questions set out below.—Note: Because the video includes brief surgical scenes, parents should use discretion in viewing the video with young children.
(1) What is the main reason why Jehovah’s Witnesses refuse blood transfusions? (2) When it comes to medical care, what do Jehovah’s Witnesses desire? (3) What basic right do patients have? (4) Why is it rational and responsible to choose transfusion alternatives? (5) When severe blood loss occurs, what two urgent priorities do doctors have? (6) What are the four principles of transfusion-alternative strategies? (7) How may doctors (a) minimize blood loss, (b) conserve red blood cells, (c) stimulate blood production, and (d) recover lost blood? (8) Describe the procedures known as (a) hemodilution and (b) cell salvage. (9) What should you want to be informed about regarding any transfusion alternative? (10) Can serious and complicated surgeries be performed without the use of blood transfusions? (11) What positive development is taking place within the medical community?
Acceptance of some of the treatments featured in the video is a matter for private decision in accord with each one’s Bible-trained conscience. Have you taken a clear position on which medical treatments and procedures you are willing to accept for yourself and your children and then filled out a DPA card? For a complete discussion of these matters, carefully review “Questions From Readers” in the June 15, 2004, and October 15, 2000, issues of The Watchtower. Then use the work sheets in the November 2006 Our Kingdom Ministry insert, “How Do I View Blood Fractions and Medical Procedures Involving My Own Blood?,” to make your personal decisions about what options you would accept or refuse. Finally, be sure that you have accurately transferred your choices to your DPA card. Your selected health-care agents and any non-Witness family members should be fully informed of your decisions.