At the beginning of May, Sonia Barkallah from S17 Productions in France came to visit me along with Corinne Musitelli who is her translator. We discussed ways of working together which I am very excited about. I have a lot to report so I will put a few postings in the coming weeks about my future work with Sonia. I will and also give more details about Sonia’s excellent DVD called Untimely Departure, keep following the blog for more details of this.
Sonia brought a short DVD recording of the CNERIC research protocol which has been conducted in France by Dr Jean-Pierre Postel. I was previously unaware of this research so I thought I’d mention it to the followers of the blog.
An IPAD is placed in a sealed box (there is a small hole big enough for the electric cable to plug in the IPAD). No one can see inside the box and, once sealed, hologram stickers are placed over the sides to ensure that the box is not tampered with thus preventing the possibility of fraud. The box is gift wrapped and the IPAD is plugged into the mains power supply.
Secret messages generated randomly from a database appear on the screen of the IPAD. These messages are displayed for an hour. The message is then deleted and replaced with another message and this is repeated every hour until the experiment is completed. The messages along with the time and date they were displayed are all logged and retrieved from a desktop computer.
All medical and nursing staff present at the time of any resuscitation are asked to complete a questionnaire in order to verify if the report of the NDE / OBE is correct.
The reason that the IPAD is in a sealed box if because, approximately 3 years ago, Dr Jean-Pierre Jourdan, who is president of IANDS, France, encountered a patient in his care who reported an OBE / NDE. The patient reported actually being inside the machine that was at his bedside. The patient believed that he was able to see inside the machine and described the different electrical components he could see from inside.
According to Sonia, computer scientist Remi Andre had the idea for this research protocol.
In previously documented cases of NDEs / OBEs some people have described seeing by transparency. Apparently, it has been reported that approximately 18% of people who had OBEs had reported being able to see through objects in their line of vision (however, I am unsure as to who published this report). This was reported by Patient 10 in my study – he believed that he was higher then the ceiling and it’s as if the ceiling had disappeared. So it is good to see this research exploring another aspect of the OBE.
This research has already been conducted by Dr Postel in one small hospital, with only one resuscitation room. Unfortunately, the research was brought to a premature end as hospital staff were concerned from a health and safety perspective that leaving the IPAD plugged in continuously could have been a fire hazard. There was also a question of funding and more money is needed to proceed with the research and continue with it in more hospitals. There has been no publication from this study so far.
Having looked at the protocol in more depth I was very impressed and believe it is probably the most thorough protocol that I have seen so far. Most importantly, it has taken into account previous research and it has built on the previous prospective studies and made improvements. I particularly like the way the box is sealed and hologram stickers are in place to prevent fraud. It has come a long way from the A4 laminated symbols that were hidden behind cardboard ridges on tops of the cardiac monitors that I used in my research! This is one of the great things about our technological advances, this technology allows the messages to randomly change every hour and no one has to spend lots of time and energy climbing up on ladders to damp dust the hidden images then rotating the images to different monitors every week!
I’m sure there will be further technological advancements that would overcome the issue with keeping the IPAD being plugged in. Let’s hope there is more funding to continue this very important research.
Penny Sartori was a nurse for 17 years in the Intensive Therapy Unit of a major hospital. Early in her career, a connection she made with a dying patient totally changed her life. After undertaking a five year research project into near-death experiences, Penny was awarded a PhD and has written, lectured and broadcast widely, and is now one of the UK's foremost experts on the subject of NDEs.