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Doctors in support of law reform for voluntary euthanasia

Legalised voluntary euthanasia would provide options for a comfortable and dignified end to life

Facts about the end of life, confirmed either by our own life experiences or by reference to peer-reviewed medical literature,1 are:

  • dying may be associated with intolerable suffering and there may be a crescendo of suffering as death approaches;

  • some suffering will only be relieved by death;

  • some patients rationally and persistently request assistance to die;

  • palliative care does not relieve all the pain and suffering of dying patients;2 and

  • palliative care may include terminal sedation in order to alleviate intolerable suffering.3

Accepting these facts leads to the inevitable conclusion that the medical profession is failing in its duty of care for some patients at a time of desperate need.