By Laura Loomer and Jennifer Ruggles-MoodyThe BBC’s Laura Lomercickel reports from the University of Oxford, UK, and Oxford University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.
The BBC’s Jennifer Ruckles-Magdoff reports from New York, USA.
The Oxford neuroscientist who made the comparison says he would have been more careful about what he had been comparing.
Dr Andrew Jackson told the BBC’s Breakfast programme that his use of the word ‘baptism’ was meant as a reference to his personal belief that people who die during childbirth should receive life insurance policies rather than a brain scan.
In the past week, Dr Jackson has been attacked by critics of the comparison, with some describing the comparison as an insult.
Dr Jackson, who is currently an associate professor of neurology at Oxford University, said: ‘I think it is absurd to compare life insurance to a brain, as you are using a life to a machine.’
If you can’t afford a brain then you are not living a good life, are you?’
People can make a choice whether to pay for the scans or not.
They can get a brain.
It’s a question of whether they want to.’
Dr Jackson has apologised for the comments, saying they were not meant to be taken out of context.
The BBC has been trying to reach Dr Jackson since Friday.
A spokesman for Oxford University Hospital NHS Foundation trust said:’The University of London is proud of the work it is doing in neurology and we are grateful for the work of our neurosurgeons.’
We have made a number of changes to the way we provide care, including to reduce costs and to provide more support to our neurology team.’
He added: ‘The University has made a decision to stop providing MRI scans to patients and have started to replace them with neuroimaging and CT scans in the near future.’
The university does not support the use of MRI to evaluate a patient’s health or the risks of a stroke or traumatic brain injury.’
In the BBC interview, Dr Andrew Jackson said that the NHS would be better off for the brain MRI.
He said: I don’t think it’s really a matter of life and death.
You are making the decision whether you want to get a CT scan or not.’
In his BBC interview last week, he said that he believed people who died in childbirth should be offered a brain surgery.
He added that he had received death threats.
Dr Paul Deakin, a neurosurgeon at the University College London Hospital, told the programme that he would be happy to discuss the matter with the BBC.
He told the Radio 4 Today programme: ‘He [Jackson] was quite wrong in his comments.
I’m sure there will be a lot of discussions between neurologists and doctors about the impact of the new technology.’
It will be interesting to see whether the new MRI technology has the same effect as the old one.’
The NHS says it will continue to monitor the development of the technology.
A spokesman said: There are no plans to stop offering MRI scans for people who have died from a brain tumour or a stroke.