To the Editor:- In a recent review of informed consent, Waisel and Truog discuss the special challenges clinicians face when caring for Jehovah's Witness patients. They note that anesthesiologists who provide services to these patients “have an ethical obligation to have authoritative knowledge about available options” if they are to fully inform these patients of the range of choices available. With this objective in mind, I would like to bring to the attention of the readers a reform movement within the Jehovah's Witness faith that allows for blood transfusions, believing (among other things) that transfusions are really a form of organ transplantation, an intervention generally allowed by the faith. Details of this reform movement are available on the Internet at http://www.visiworld.com/starter/newlight/
Informing Jehovah's Witness patients of the existence of this reform movement is an option clinicians may wish to consider to ensure full, informed consent.
D. John Doyle, M.D., Ph.D., F.R.C.P.C.
Associate Professor; Department of Anesthesia; University of Toronto and Toronto Hospital; Toronto, Canada
(Accepted for publication April 7, 1998)