Thank you Atlantis for the emails that you send out to so many of us. In one email that I received dated 21st October was a JW document Title "Information for Patients requiring Chemotherapy or Surgery"
The organization never ceases to shock and I was disgusted with the information included in this document because it leads to their followers not getting the best medical care, not just because of their no blood policy but because of the other repercussions which they highlight in this information guide.
They begin by stating they are not giving medical advice, just information to help individuals make their own decisions.
Point 7 states
7. Oncologist: He is a cancer specialist. He may recommend chemotherapy, radiation, or other therapies to treat the cancer. Some treatments will impair the body’s ability to produce new blood cells.
(1) Ask how he can individualize or modify your chemotherapy protocol by extending the cycles or reducing the dosage if needed.
(2) Ask about the use of drugs that stimulate production of red blood cells, white blood cells, and platelets.
They are telling followers to reduce the amount of chemo simply based on the idea that there is a possibility of needing a blood transplant.
Point 8 states
8. Hematologist: He is a blood disorder specialist. For a very limited number of patients with certain conditions, he may recommend a hematopoietic (blood-forming) stem cell trans?plant (also called a bone marrow transplant). Such stem cells can be collected from your own blood or the blood of another person. Since these can be complex medical matters, the Hospital Liaison Committee (HLC) can assist you to understand the issues and to communi?cate with caregivers. However, the HLC will not make a decision for you regarding a stem cell transplant. Because the transplant will also unintentionally include other blood cells, you will have to decide, in harmony with your Bible-trained conscience, whether you can accept it.
(1) Ask your caregiver how the stem cells will be stored before they are reinfused.
(2) If the stem cells are from another person, ask your caregiver how he will manage your condition without using infusions of donor lymphocytes (a type of white blood cells).
(3) Some hospitals routinely administer blood transfusions in the course of recovery. Ask your caregiver to explain how he plans to avoid this
They advice that a stem cell transplant will unintentionally include other blood cells and it is up to the individual as to whether they accept it or not. Given that they state any blood transfusion is also up to the individual to accept or not, it's hard to conclude that it is okay to do this. However, they suggest that they can but need to clarify a couple of matters first.
The only basis they give for it being acceptable seems to be because blood cells are 'unintentionally' included with the stem cells. This is just a word game here as they are obviously 'intentionally' included if they are there. What they are suggesting is that the individual isn't 'intentionally' having blood, instead their main aim is to have the stem cell transplant and since it's just a 'byproduct' it's okay.