As a Dutch first aid medic for the Red Cross, I've once had a lovely shift on a meeting for Psychiatrists. Though a peculiar (and very diverse) audience, the people trying to sell stuff in their little stands were pretty much all the same highly motivated salesmen. While doing a round hoping to find some victim who might need rescuing, I was stopped by a paper held in front of my face. Slightly off guard I was asked "What would you do? Reanimate (resuscitate) or not?" Being drilled to follow protocols, I said reanimate. The salesman was expressing feelings of hurt and shock, as if I personally attacked him with my answer. It was a stand from the NVVE, an organization for a "voluntary life's end". I was quite interested and have dug into a little. I also opened up discussion about this do-not-resuscitate-me tag with other medical professionals (mostly first aid folks though). Basically, both as a first aid medic, a disaster relief medic and in a future profession as a nurse on the IC or ambulance, I am not to care for a person's wish to die. This still hasn't settled inside myself. I am all for assisted suicide, IF that suicide is well considered and psychologists can agree it is for the better of the individual. But this badge can be ordered by anyone, anonymously. Even by me, a healthy young man. And though I would want to respect the wishes of any individual, I would have great trouble withholding myself from doing CPR would I find an otherwise perfectly healthy (young) person. Especially an otherwise perfectly healthy handsome young guy. Fortunately, like I said, the protocol is simple: there is no suggestion of what to do when a medic comes across a badge demanding they are not to resuscitate the person. Even a relative with papers signed by the victim cannot move the protocol. Only in hospital wards and nursing homes can non-resuscitation protocols be applied. Ambulance workers as well as plain first aid medics, are solely focused on one thing: keeping people alive and healthy. Unless medics are made aware of a person's wish to not be resuscitated well in advance, they follow their protocols. Once started, they are not permitted to stop (unless exhausted, patients recovers or someone takes over (or patient brain-dead)). The biggest argument is that people are afraid that a CPR attempt will be successful, 'successful' as in the patient is alive. But terribly disabled. People are afraid of, as we say here, ending up as a greenhouse plant. All one big non-argument as I see it: I'd rather try to keep on living, instead of giving up entirely when faced with the possibility of disability and death. You have to at least try, right? I'm looking forward to other people's ideas on this matter. Maybe this is so outlandish it needs further elaboration (which I would like to be made aware of), maybe this is a settled matter in other countries as well. I'd like to know whether something like this exists in your country, and, again, what you think of it and of the way professional medics respect it (or not).