Mom Says “Brain Dead” Teen Jahi McMath is Doing Better

National   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Feb 21, 2014   |   11:56AM   |   Oakland, CA

Jahi McMath, who was left in a precarious medical state following a botched tonsillectomy, is reportedly doing better — according to an open letter her  mother released online. Jahi was the subject of a national debate recently as her parents fought a hospital that wanted to remove her life support.

Jahi was transferred from Oakland Children’s Hospital January 5 after a protracted legal battle between the family and the hospital which declared Jahi brain dead December 12 and sought to remove her from a ventilator.

JahiMcMath5Although the hospital maintains McMath is “brain dead,” her mother and family say she is alive following a tonsillectomy gone awry that has left her in an incapacitated state since early December. The family, during the debate, said the hospital had been starving Jahi for three weeks.

But Jahi’s mother says the teen is not suffering and claims her medical condition is improving.

“Despite what people say about my daughter being dead and how I must be ignorant not to get that, I can tell you that she is much better physically since she has left Children’s Hospital and I see changes that give me hope,” wrote Nailah Winkfield in the letter posted Wednesday to Facebook.

“If I had it my way, I would say thank you to each and every person in their native language so they could understand how much I appreciate them,” Winkfield wrote in the letter. “It is my belief that faith in God, your prayers, and the incredible kindness of good-hearted medical professionals, are the main reasons my daughter is alive today.”

“It is because of you that my daughter’s experience is so relevant and that people all over the world know who Jahi McMath is. What you may not know is that her name, Jahi, means one who is known by many. Hopefully my daughter can change some of the ways brain death is viewed in today’s society. Honestly, I think she already has.”

“For those who believe, please, keep praying for Jahi,” Winkfield wrote in the letter. “God can overcome all things and I believe that His will has yet to be fully revealed. I love Jahi and where there is love, there is hope.”



The letter follows a video the family released at the end of January that the family says shows Jahi alive and moving her toes.

Christopher Dolan, the attorney who took up for the parents by acting as their pro bono representative while they fought the hospital to provide adequate care and food and water for their daughter, has an opinion column in the Los Angeles Times explaining why he took the case. Dolan’s comments, without further ado, are quite compelling and give good food for thought.