Category: News

Last year, Wilko Johnson cheated death – now he’s back, and bloody annoyed

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by Kate Mossman, New Statesman, 21 December 2015 Doctors do fantastic things for us every single day. But they are not invincible, and some times they make mistakes just like the rest of us. It might be a mistake of diagnosis or prognosis or treatment. After being diagnosed with terminal cancer, the former Dr Feelgood… Read more »

The absurd logic of assisted suicide

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by Andrew Coyne, National Post, 17 December 2015 Andrew Coyne asks some uncomfortable questions as Canada considers the practicalities of introducing assisted suicide. Among the many questions left unanswered in the report of the Provincial-Territorial Expert Advisory Group on Physician-Assisted Dying, one strikes me as inescapable. When dispatching a patient by lethal injection, would a doctor… Read more »

Thanks to the nurses and doctors

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As most of us have a day off to spend time with friends and family, and to give thanks for the joys of life, let’s take a moment to think of everyone who is working today – engineers, police, and the doctors and nurses caring for those in hospital – and say thanks. Brie Gowen describes herself as… Read more »

Police investigation into disabled person’s death inadequate

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by Independent Police Conduct Authority, 21 December 2015 A critical issue in thinking about assisted suicide is how it exposes social attitudes towards disability. As Dr Huhana Hickey said in her affidavit in the Seales case “At the heart of arguments for euthanasia and assisted suicide is a belief that some lives are not worth living…. Read more »

Killing isn’t caring

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by William Toffler, Citizen, December 2015 Dr Toffler has practised medicine in Oregon for the last 36 years. Since assisted suicide was legalised in the state 20 years ago he has seen “a profound shift in the public’s attitude toward medical care”. His opposition to assisted suicide is personal as well as professional: last year… Read more »

Tips for managing grief during the holiday season

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Palliative Care Australia has published seven tips for managing grief during the holiday season. Grief can be triggered by any number of things, a scent, a song, a picture. For many Australians the festive season, when we traditionally come together with family and loved ones, emphasises the people missing as much as those who are… Read more »

Clive James on his illness

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Clive James – the great Australian critic, poet, writer and performer – was diagnosed with leukaemia in 2010. He has continued to read and write, voraciously, while he receives treatment at Cambridge’s Addenbrooke hospital. Nurses are on my mind of late. At Addenbrooke’s I see them all the time, and I expect the day will… Read more »

FBI reports hate crimes against disabled persons in 2014

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The FBI collects crime statistics from 15,494 American law enforcement agencies. Its latest report  identifies that in 2014 there were 84 offences against 96 people because of their mental or physical disabilities. Note: these were only the reported cases. Click here to read the tables. Earlier this year, The Guardian reported on disability hate crimes in… Read more »

Canadian euthanasia committee says 12-year olds should be eligible

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by Sharon Kirkey, National Post, 14 December 2015 The nine-member “expert panel” advising Canadian provinces on the implementation of Carter v Canada argues there should be no “arbitrary age limits” for assisted death, and that eligibility should be based on maturity and mental competence, not age. “A five-year-old? A seven-year-old? They would never be seen as… Read more »

First glimmers of second thoughts in Belgium

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by Andy Furniere, Flanders Today, 9 December 2015 Belgium has the world’s broadest euthanasia law. Some people are now having second thoughts: 65 psychiatrists, psychologists and professors have published an Open Letter saying that euthanasia should not be available for psychological suffering alone. On average, 2,000 people a year in Belgium choose to end their lives… Read more »