The Doctors: Dying Elderly Woman Refused CPR & Good Samaritan Law


The Doctors: Dying Woman Refused CPR

The Doctors began their latest all-new episode with a disturbing news story that’s causing controversy from coast-to-coast. Why would an assisted living staff member refuse CPR, allowing an elderly woman to die? Here’s more on this shocking story.

The Doctors replayed the frustrating 911 call between a staff member at a Bakersfield, California assisted living home and an emergency operator. When 87-year-old Lorraine Bayless collapsed and stopped breathing, the staff member called 911, but refused to perform CPR.


“I don’t understand why you’re not willing to help this patient,” the operator said, repeatedly asking if someone else could be called in to perform CPR. For seven minutes, the staff member remained strangely calm, making excuse after excuse. It’s extremely sad to listen to, and had the doctors understandably angry.

The Drs: Good Samaritan Law

The Doctors: Dying Elderly Woman Refused CPR & Good Samaritan Law

The Doctors investigated the story of an 87-year-old woman who died when an assisted living staff member refused to perform CPR.


The Doctors did emphasize that this wasn’t a nursing home, but an assisted living home. It could have been that the staff member wasn’t allowed to perform CPR because of company policy. Still, it doesn’t make sense that she remained so calm while watching an elderly woman die.

The Good Samaritan Law protects citizens, but as Dr. Lisa Masterson pointed out, there are loopholes to this law. Sometimes employees aren’t covered, which is why the staff member could have been asking herself, “what’s my liability?”

The Doctors: Chief Anthony Galagaza Interview

Dr. Travis Stork spoke with Battalion Chief of the Bakersfield Fire Department Anthony Galagaza, who described what happened when help finally arrived. First and foremost, emergency workers checked if there was a DNR (Do Not Resuscitate) order, which Dr. Travis also does before treating someone in the E.R. Since there wasn’t a DNR, the victim was brought to the hospital.

The family of Lorraine Bayless released a statement, which Dr. Travis read to the audience. “She was fully aware that Glenwood Gardens did not offer trained medical staff,” Lorraine’s family wrote. Brookdale Senior Living also released a statement claiming that they were further investigating the matter. What’s your take on this complex story?


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