C H N     Euthanasia 2007 updates Netherlands


Latest news beginning from March 22, 2007 (this page will be updated with news from the Netherlands as it comes in)

Press Review 22 March 2007 Thursday by Nicola Chadwick 22-03-2007

Euthanasia increase
Trouw reports that the number of cases of euthanasia of patients with dementia has increased significantly. In 2003 no cases were reported, in 2006 there were six. Euthanasia in these cases is sensitive because two of the legal criteria under Dutch law cannot be met.

The first is the ability to give informed consent and the second is the suffering has to be unbearable. The euthanasia law stipulates that a doctor cannot be prosecuted if he adheres to these criteria.

In cases of dementia it is difficult to determine whether a patient is able to give informed consent or the suffering is unbearable. Even a doctor, who regularly writes for Trouw and opposes euthanasia, recently agreed that a 79-year-old dementia patient should be allowed to die. He predicts an increase in the practice among patients in the early stages of the disease.





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