Having a possible escape to end life at your own timing offers reassurance and changes the perspective on current and prospective suffering

By Martijn Hagens. In a recent blog, Ben Colburn discusses that ‘the option of assisted dying is good for you even if you don’t want to die. In the paper related to that blog, he argues that “if someone knows they have a (potentially) acceptable escape, it changes the character of the choice set as a […]

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Euthanasia please, we are Portuguese

By Vera Lúcia Raposo Recently, in spite of protests from conservatives and the Catholic Church, the Portuguese parliament approved five proposals aimed to allow medically assisted death (referred to as ‘anticipation of death’) at the patient’s request. The procedure requires specific conditions: patients of legal age, with incurable and fatal disease or permanent injury, and […]

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Should the state permit us to be younger and treat us accordingly in health care?

By Kasper Lippert-Rasmussen and Thomas Søbirk Petersen. In some states, citizens can change their officially recognized gender. Why not other identities as well? Why not age, for instance? In December 2018, 69-year-old Dutchman and former politician Emile Ratelband lost his court battle to have his legal age reduced by 20 years. In presenting his case […]

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The first prosecution of a Dutch doctor since the Euthanasia Act of 2002: what does the verdict mean?

By Eva C.A. Asscher and Suzanne van de Vathorst. On September 11th 2019, a verdict was reached in the first prosecution of a doctor for carrying out euthanasia in The Netherlands since the 2002 Termination of Life on Request and Assisted Suicide (Review Procedures) Act was passed. The case concerned a patient with severe dementia […]

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What does the public think should happen when parents and doctors disagree about life support for a child?

By Claudia Brick and Dominic Wilkinson. The case of Tafida Raqeeb, currently being heard in the High Court, is the latest high profile legal battle between physicians and parents about life sustaining treatment for a seriously ill child. Since suffering a severe stroke in February, five-year old Tafida has been in intensive care at the […]

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To the Independent Review of the Mental Health Act 1983: Think again

By Harry Hudson The recent review of the Mental Health Act 1983, published in December 2018, focused on increasing choice and reducing compulsion. It highlighted dignity as the first casualty of compulsive powers; their use was identified as denying self-respect to patients. When discussing compulsion, it failed to properly challenge involuntary medication of patients with […]

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Sacrificing The Career Of An Otherwise Competent And Useful Doctor: Nurse/Doctor Differences After Gross Negligence Manslaughter

By Nathan Hodson. Last week Hadiza Bawa-Garba was told that she would be able to return to clinical practice having been suspended since her conviction for gross negligence manslaughter in 2015. Whether or not the decision is good for public confidence in the medical profession, it is probably good news for patients that, from February […]

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Stay in Your Lane: On the National Rifle Association’s Response to Physicians’ Support for a Public Health Approach to Firearms-Related Violence

By Christian Chartier and Philippe April. On July 21st, 2018, the American College of Physicians’ (ACP) Board of Regents approved a policy paper commissioned to reiterate the ACP’s support for a public health approach to firearms-related violence. On November 7th, eight days after the article’s eventual publication, the National Rifle Association (NRA) issued a reply […]

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