Cardiac & Resuscitation, Coronavirus, News

Report: NY Issues Do Not Resuscitate Guidelines for Cardiac Patients, Later Rescinds Them

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Update: State Health Commissioner Dr. Howard Zucker rescinded the do not resuscitate order on Wednesday.

“This guidance, proposed by physician leaders of the EMS Regional Medical Control Systems and the State Advisory Council – in accordance with American Heart Association guidance and based on standards recommended by the American College of Emergency Physicians and adopted in multiple other states – was issued April 17, 2020 at the recommendation of the Bureau of Emergency Medical Services, and reflected ‎nationally recognized minimum standards,” Jeffrey Hammond, a spokesperson with the state’s Health Department told JEMS in an email. “However, they don’t reflect New York’s standards and for that reason DOH commissioner Dr. Howard Zucker has ordered them to be rescinded.”


Original order: New York state health officials are urging emergency service workers not to revive anyone without a pulse as the state battles coronavirus, according to a report.

A memo from the state Health Department says the change is “necessary during the COVID-19 response to protect the health and safety of EMS providers by limiting their exposure, conserve resources, and ensure optimal use of equipment to save the greatest number of lives,’’ the New York Post reported.

Related: Complete COVID-19 Coverage from JEMS

The new guidelines have been in use in other areas of the United States and locations around the world before COVID-19.

Oren Barzilay, president of the Uniformed EMTs, Paramedics & Fire Inspectors FDNY – Local 2507, told the newspaper the city is “not giving people a second chance to live anymore.”

Related: New York City Limits Transports of Cardiac Arrest Patients

The FDNY wrote in a letter “the NYC 911 system will continue to maintain a higher level of care,” according to the Post.