Valdosta Daily Times

January 1, 2014

Calif. girl to remain on ventilator until Jan. 7

LISA LEFF and TERRY COLLINS
The Associated Press

OAKLAND, Calif. — A California girl declared brain dead after tonsil surgery will remain on life support for at least another week after a state judge on Monday extended a deadline.

Jahi McMath’s mother, Nailah Winkfield, hailed the decision as an answer to her prayers and a sign that she has been right to keep fighting for the teen, who doctors have said will never recover.

With television cameras clustered outside the hospital, the family maintained a vigil as the deadline approached.

When Winkfield heard of the judge’s decision to push back the deadline, she wept and hugged relatives outside the hospital.

“Who wants to know the date and the time their child would die?” Winkfield said. “I don’t care what anyone has to say about what I’m doing. ... I have to do what is right for me and for Jahi.”

She said she does not believe her daughter is dead because her heart is still beating.

Doctors at Children’s Hospital Oakland want to take her off the machines that are keeping her body functioning.

Her family wants to continue life support, saying they

have hope she will still pull through.

Shortly before a previous ruling would have allowed doctors to end life support at 5 p.m.

Monday, Alameda County

Superior Court Judge Evelio Grillo ordered the hospital to keep Jahi on a ventilator until Jan. 7 to give the family time to file a petition in state appellate court.