Brain-Dead Girl’s Mother Vows to Fight

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The mother of a 13-year-old Oakland girl who was pronounced brain-dead after a routine tonsillectomy says she will not stop fighting to have her daughter kept on a ventilator in the hopes that one day she’ll wake up.


Thirteen-year-old Jahi McMath, right, had a tonsillectomy to correct a form of sleep apnea. (Credit: Omari Sealey)

Jahi McMath has been at the center of a public battle since she was found to be brain-dead soon after a routine procedure to remove her tonsils at Children’s Hospital & Research Center Oakland on Dec. 9.

Her family has been fighting to keep her on a ventilator, despite the determination of a supervising doctor at the hospital that “there is absolutely no medical possibility” that Jahi’s condition is reversible “or that she will someday recover from death,” according to a court declaration.

An Alameda County judge Monday ordered hospital officials to keep Jahi on a ventilator until Dec. 30 while an independent neurologist reviews her case. That second medical opinion could be delivered as soon as Tuesday.

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