Do-Not-Resuscitate Orders in the Operating Room

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Do-not-resuscitate (DNR) orders have been implemented in every setting in the hospital during the past two decades. Because of ethical concern about the inappropriate application of cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR),1,2 their use has spread from the wards to the intensive care unit and thence to the entire hospital. DNR policies, required of all hospitals seeking accreditation from the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations,3 are usually presumed to apply to every treatment setting. The Patient Self-Determination Act of 19904 provides that any patient who enters an institution receiving Medicare or Medicaid funds must be advised of his or her right …

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