Jason Hautala RN
Just because someone is too far out of it to communicate or even move, doesn’t mean they can’t hear you or feel pain and anxiety. You know she has some painful conditions, and you know most people would feel some type of anxiety over not being able to move and being close to death. For these reasons I would be giving the narcs and benzos as ordered to keep the patient comfortable. Yes, it may speed the process up, but unless the goal of your treatment is to keep her alive and cure her, then the goal should be to keep her comfortable.
I’ve held off on narcotics briefly for people who were actively bleeding out and didn’t have any blood pressure to mess with, but we were working hard to get a blood pressure back and save a life … but it doesn’t sound like this patient was intended to make a recovery, so if the goal of treatment ends with a dead patient, I think you should keep the patient as comfortable as possible during that process.
I would rather err on the side of giving medicines to someone who was so far out of it that they didn’t need it than to not give meds to someone who was silently suffering during their last days on this planet. When I’m that patient, give me lots and lots of pain meds.