In 2016, the Canadian Critical Care Society published a withdrawal of life sustaining measures (WLSM) guideline with the intent of standardizing WLSM practices and quality assurance frameworks.
A crucial aspect of the DCD process, Canadian Blood Services convened a pan-Canadian and multidisciplinary collaborative to examine the WLSM guideline and create implementation and quality tools to support the adoption of the guideline in hospitals across the country.
A set of guiding principles for implementation of the guideline in DCD practice were produced, as well as implementation and quality assurance tools.
Is the process of withdrawal of life-sustaining measures in the intensive care unit different for deceased organ donors compared with other dying patients? A secondary analysis of prospectively collected data - PubMed (nih.gov)
Francoeur C, Hornby L, Silva A, Scales NB, Weiss M, Dhanani S. Paediatric death after withdrawal of life-sustaining therapies: a scoping review protocol. BMJ Open. 2022 Sep 19;12(9):e064918. doi: 10.1136/bmjopen-2022-064918.PMID: 36123110
Healey, A., Hartwick, M., Downar, J. et al. Improving quality of withdrawal of life-sustaining measures in organ donation: a framework and implementation toolkit. Can J Anesth/J Can Anesth (2020).
Downar J, Delaney JW, Hawryluck L, Kenny L. Guidelines for the withdrawal of life-sustaining measures. Intensive Care Med. 2016;42(6):1003-1017.
PDF copies of the following reports are available by request. Submit a request by sending an email to OTDT@blood.ca, please include the title and use the subject line: PDF Document Request.
For additional resources, visit the Withdrawal of Life Sustaining Measures Resources page.
Quality Assurance Tools