Category: News

Terminally ill child becomes first euthanised minor in Belgium

by David Chazan, The Daily Telegraph, 17 September 2016 Mr Chazan reports on the announcement by Belgian authorities of the first reported case of euthanasia of a minor since the law was amended in 2014. Professor Wim Distelmans, the chair of the federal euthanasia committee, says that “Fortunately there are very few children who are considered… Read more »

The assisted dying debate needs to move on from binary questions

by Stephen Child, The Spinoff, 27 August 2016 Dr Child is the President of the New Zealand Medical Association. In jurisdictions where euthanasia and assisted laws exist, concern is growing about the impact on palliative care, where those seeking euthanasia are referred first to palliative care for assessment. This has led to confusion in patients… Read more »

Euthanasia and organ donation in the Netherlands

  Earlier this year Jan Bollen, a Dutch researcher, “advocated for ‘heart-beating organ donation euthanasia’. This would involve an operation in which organs would be taken from still-living patients who have given permission.” Click here to read more.   Now, the lower house of the Netherlands parliament has narrowly approved a bill that creates a “yes… Read more »

Euthanasia too final when the risk of error is too great – Doctors

by Stacey Kirk, Stuff, 14 September 2016 Dr Stephen Child, chair of the New Zealand Medical Association, appeared before the Health Select Committee investigation into the desire to end one’s life. Short-changing a terminally ill patient on their prognosis and the grey area between a “rational” suicide and an “irrational” one, pose too great a risk… Read more »

Legalising assisted dying is dangerous for disabled people. Not compassionate

by Liz Carr, The Guardian, 9 September 2016 Liz Carr – British comedian, broadcaster, activist and creator of Assisted Suicide: The Musical – marks World Suicide Prevention Day with an opinion piece highlighting the troubling inconsistency in attitudes towards suicide. If I said I wanted to die, the press, celebrities and the public would support… Read more »

Palliative care doctor shares highlights of working in Broken Hill

by Heather Wiseman, Palliative Care Australia, 6 September 2016 Ms Wiseman talks with Dr Sarah Denham, the sole palliative care doctor in Broken Hill, New South Wales, serving a population of 32,000 people spread across 195,000 km². I learned as an intern you can make a difference from the beginning, by learning good communication skills… Read more »

Dave Churchman is dying, but he’s facing it with a smile

by David Burroughs, Taranaki Daily News, 10 September 2016 Mr Burroughs reports on Dave Churchman, a 53-year old New Plymouth man with cancer. As the former owner/operator of New Plymouth’s House of Travel, he spent a number of hours raising money for Hospice Taranaki, which is now caring for him. “It’s one of those things… Read more »

They’re killing psychiatric patients in the Netherlands

by S. Kim et al, ‘Euthanasia and Assisted Suicide of Patients with Psychiatric Disorders in the Netherlands 2011 to 2014’, JAMA Psychiatry. 2016;73(4):362-368. doi:10.1001/jamapsychiatry.2015.2887. The authors reviewed 66 case summaries provided by Dutch regional euthanasia committees. Euthanasia or assisted suicide (EAS) of psychiatric patients is increasing in some jurisdictions such as Belgium and the Netherlands. However, little… Read more »

They’re killing psychiatric patients in Belgium

by Lieve Thienpont et al, ‘Euthanasia requests, procedures and outcomes for 100 Belgian patients suffering from psychiatric disorders: a retrospective, descriptive study’, BMJ Open 2015;5: e007454. doi:10.1136/ bmjopen-2014-007454 The authors of this study are involved in the euthanasia of psychiatric patients in Belgium. The study looks at the first 100 requests for euthanasia in the outpatient clinic… Read more »