RCUK’s statement on the Ansell-Austin case

Resuscitation Council UK acknowledges the tragedy surrounding the death in October 2017 of Mr Ansell-Austin, and the distress it has caused to his family and to the staff involved. 

All health professionals have a duty to provide care based on the best available evidence and best practice and to recognise and work within the limits of their competence. Those working in an environment in which they may encounter death or cardiac arrest should ensure they have the necessary competence to recognise when CPR may be beneficial. Just as importantly, they need to know and be able to recognise when CPR will be of no benefit to a person and will either deprive them of a dignified death or potentially cause them harm. 

Organisations employing health professionals have a duty to have policies and procedures in place that both protect their clients and patients and protect their staff. Additionally, they should provide their staff with the education, training and support that they need to fulfil their duties.