A teenage Jehovah’s Witness who was crushed by a car refused a blood transfusion before he died.
Joshua McAuley, 15, is understood to have declined the treatment advised by doctors and was not overruled by members of his family.
The teenager was a member of the Kingdom Hall of Jehovah’s Witnesses in Smethwick.
A spokesman from Selly Oak hospital said: “There’s not one single policy and not one single law regarding transfusions. There’s no automatic right to override parental wishes or that of a minor. It’s a very complex area that has to be approached on a case by case basis. ”
Jehovah’s Witnesses are taught that passages of the Bible forbid blood transfusions. Members who do accept such treatment can be cast out of the church. Many Jehovah’s Witnesses carry a signed and witnessed advance directive card absolutely refusing blood and releasing doctors from any liability arising from this refusal.
Clive Parker, an elder at Kingdom Hall of Jehovah’s Witnesses where Joshua and his family worshipped, said: “I believe he was conscious enough after the accident and he made a stand on the blood issue. He made the choice personally.”
(Cedars’ vlog no. 242) Jehovah’s Witnesses are well known for refusing blood transfusions, but when did their blood teaching originate and does it make logical sense? In this video I pose seven questions to Witnesses who consider themselves loyal to this potentially life-threatening interpretation of scripture.