Mexico Senate Approves Bill Allowing Refusal of Treatment, Not Assisted Suicide
by Steven Ertelt
November 25, 2008
Mexico City, Mexico (LifeNews.com) — The Mexico Congress has approved a bill that some media outlets are wrongly describing as a "right to die" measure. The measure does not legalize assisted suicide or euthanasia but allows terminally ill patients to refuse further lifesaving medical treatment.
The lower house of Congress already approved the bill and the Senate voted unanimously on Tuesday for the measure with one abstention.
The legislation now heads to President Felipe Calderon for his signature and he is expected to sign the bill since his conservative National Action Party supported the measure in Congress.
The measure allows incurably ill patients or those with a life expectancy of six months or less to sign a document before witnesses suspending medical treatment.
While the bill doesn’t allow assisted suicide or euthanasia, pro-life advocates and Catholic Church leaders in Mexico have been worried about the Mexico City legislative assembly approving a pro-suicide bill.
The Mexico City legislature, which is separate from Congress and issues laws for the federal district has already approved a measure legalizing abortion in the capital for the first 12 weeks of pregnancy even though abortion is illegal in the rest of Mexico.
Mexico has been promoted as a destination for to obtain drugs that elderly people or terminally ill patients can use to kill themselves.
At least 200 people from English-speaking countries have traveled there since 2001 to end their lives.
Exit International, a pro-euthanasia group from Australia, is behind the effort to promote the use of animal euthanasia drugs such as Nembutal to kill people.
However, an undercover news team from a television station in San Diego has found that officials in Mexico are cracking down on sales of the drug.
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