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Orthodox Jewish family Fights to Keep Teenage Daughter On Life support as Their Faith Prohibits Removing It

An Orthodox Jewish family whose teenage  daughter has been diagnosed with a malignant brain tumor is fighting to keep her  on life support because their faith prohibits taking her off it.

The family of 19-year-old Danielle Zfat, from Hollywood, Florida,  have filed an emergency motion in court  claiming doctors indicated they would remove life support.

Yet the Zfats are Orthodox Jews and their  beliefs dictate the machines should not be switched off, as everything must be  done to preserve a human life.

Holding on: Nineteen-year-old Danielle Zfat was diagnosed with a malignant brain tumour 14 months ago and is now battling for her life on life support, right. Her parents are fighting to keep

They also claim the teenager previously  blinked to indicate she wanted to be kept alive.

‘Our way to believe as a Jew, is that  everything goes through the heart,’ Danielle’s mother,  Aviva Zfat, told WSVN.  ‘As long as the heart beats, the soul is  in the heart, and therefore she is alive.’

The teenager was preparing to move to New  York for college 14 months ago when she woke up with numbness  down one side of  her body.

To the devastation of her close-knit family,  she was diagnosed with an aggressive tumour.

As her condition deteriorated, she was  admitted to hospital on November 25. Then on January 1, her  condition quickly  worsened and she was placed on life support.

Her family is now battling to keep her hooked  up to the machines and has even taken Joe  DiMaggio Children’s Hospital to court after claiming staff wanted to remove the  support.

The family’s attorney filed an  emergency  motion in court claiming that from January 3, doctors ‘have indicated that they will be removing all medical systems which support her life’.

One of the family’s attorneys, Manachem Mayberg said: ‘The doctor’s  of the hospital  specifically asked her whether she wanted to fight and  continue her life to  live. She blinked once for yes.’

‘We just want her to live,’ Aviva Zfat said.  ‘When God decides to take her, then he will take her.

‘She’s breathing, she’s alive. She’s up there  alive, breathing. Take care of my daughter please. Give her life. Don’t cut her  off.’

But in a statement, the hospital said they do  not intend to remove the girl’s life support.

‘Our hearts and compassion are with the  family at this difficult time,’ it read.

‘Due to patient confidentiality, we are  unable to discuss the medical aspects of this case, except to say that it was  not the hospital’s intention to remove life support.

‘As an institution that values deeper caring,  we do our utmost to respect religious and cultural beliefs.’

Over the course of her treatment,  Danielle  has taken to her social networking profiles to update followers about her  chemotherapy treatments. In June, she simply wrote: ‘I miss my hair.’

In an extraordinary show of courage,  she has  remained upbeat throughout, grinning in photographs and calling  for friends to  support the fight against cancer.

Her mother added: If I can take her place.  I’ll do it. I’ll switch places. I’m older. I’ve done enough for me. She can have  my time.’

Source: The Daily Mail

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Posted by on January 10, 2013. Filed under Jewish News,Slider. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.