what would do you in this kind of situation?


what would you do if you go into patients room and find out that patient have expired and patient is a full code?

I would take a set of vitals, and if the patient indeed expired, notify the charge nurse, the patients physician, the hospital supervisor as well as the patients family. The organ donation facility would have to be notified to see if the patient is a candidate for organ donation .The body would have to be cleansed tagged and wrapped, atleast at my facility.

You didn't provide much details, just the fact that the patient expired and she was a full code.

TheCommuter, BSN, RN

226 Articles; 27,608 Posts

Specializes in Case mgmt., rehab, (CRRN), LTC & psych. Has 17 years experience.

At our facility, we have to initiate a full code on all expirations that are not DNRs, even though it is rather obvious that the patient has been deceased for a while. We typically perform CPR on the corpse until EMS arrives and pronounces death.

Daytonite, BSN, RN

4 Articles; 14,603 Posts

Specializes in med/surg, telemetry, IV therapy, mgmt. Has 40 years experience.

Yell for help; have someone call 911 and start CPR.

locolorenzo22, BSN, RN

1 Article; 2,396 Posts

Specializes in Ortho, Neuro, Detox, Tele.

Start CPR, yell for help, and do until someone in charge tells you you can stop....

Specializes in Psych, Med/Surg, Home Health, Oncology.

Feel for a pulse (carotid)

Call the code--however that is done in your facility; we push a button which is connected to the operator; Call for help from co-workers to get code cart, initiate rescue breathing & cpr;

We must call the code for all pt's unless there is a LET order (DNR).

In our facility, as 1 person is doing the compressions, we are placing the pads (quick-combo pads). The code team is usually there before the machine begins the analysis; however, if the code team for some reason is delayed, if the machine instructs defibrillation, it is done.

However, I have never seen them this delayed.

Our code team then takes over & we are runners & recorders.

I work in a large, big city, teaching hospital.

Actually, this happened to me just last week. The code that followed was one of our better codes, even tho the pt. didn't make it.

In fact, we only ran the code for the minimum amout of time---10 min. because it was pretty obvious this man was not going to come back.

Specializes in nursing home care. Has 5 years experience.

In my experience, if the person is cold,probably dead for a while, we notify doc and family after taking obs to verify. Doc comes and announces death.

Trauma Columnist

traumaRUs, MSN, APRN

153 Articles; 21,229 Posts

Specializes in Nephrology, Cardiology, ER, ICU. Has 31 years experience.

I think much depends on your policies of your facility. I would follow those procedures.


129 Posts

You have to start a full code and continue until paramedics arrive and take over. I have been in this situation.The patient was dead as a doornail but we had to keep going with CPR. Of course we were not very enthusiastic with the chest compressions until the medics arrived-if you know what I mean.


645 Posts

I work in LTC and we have to initiate CPR and call 911. Even when you can tell that they have been deceased. We can only stop when paramedics take over.


276 Posts

Specializes in Emergency Dept. Has 10 years experience.

Only the docs pronounce on anyone who is not a DNR - meaning even if you know they are gone you call the code and initiate CPR. If they are that far gone, then the ER doc will call it shortly, but you at least have to make the effort.

Specializes in Licensed Practical Nurse.

the ltc where i work, a lot of the residents are dnr, but if not like everyone above me said, get vs, call supervisor, m.d, family, etc...

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