Human Exceptionalism

Belgian Doctors Forced to be Complicit in Euthanasia

Belgium’s legalization of euthanasia doesn’t get enough attention. But little escapes Alex Schadenberg, head of the Canadian-based Euthanasia Prevention Coalition. In this blog entry, based on a translation of Belgian policy, he notes that doctors in that country must either participate in, or if opposed ethically, personally obtain a death doctor for patients who want euthanasia. From the policy:

Doctors must also tell patients that euthanasia is available as an overall discussion of “palliative care” and the policy seeks to prevent “Each physician has the right to deem euthanasia or another end-of-life decision as being in contravention of his or her personal beliefs. This physician is then obliged to inform his or her patient of this clearly and in good time and to organise a smooth referral

That approach has been tried in this country too, so far without success. Physicians all over the world should begin to put plaques up in their offices announcing to patients that they are in a “euthanasia free zone.”