Patients in Belgium are Euthanized Without Consent, Half of Assisted Suicides Not Reported

International   |   Alex Schadenberg   |   Apr 8, 2014   |   3:38PM   |   Brussels, Belgium

The recent video promoting the legalization of euthanasia and assisted suicide, as shown on Vision TV, tells the story of people who want to die by euthanasia.

When considering these stories it appears that opposing “assisted death” is irrational, but this video was designed to promote the legalization of euthanasia and not to provide full information on all sides of the issue.

To legalize euthanasia requires a change in the law to allow one group of people, most likely doctors, the right, in law, to kill another group of people in society.

picassistedsuicide15When the euthanasia law is abused, it means that someone has died, who didn’t request it, who may have been coerced into it, who was depressed or mentally ill, or one of many scenario’s that occur.

To state that euthanasia, in the few jurisdictions where it is legal, has not been abused is a lie and to suggest that euthanasia would not be abused in Canada is to suggest that we live in a utopia, which we do not.

Legalizing euthanasia or assisted suicide is not safe and the negative outcome is lethal.

A few facts:

In Belgium, one study found that 32% of the assisted deaths were done without request.

Another Belgian study found that only 53% of the assisted deaths were reported and 73% of the reported assisted deaths fulfilled the requirements of the euthanasia law and .

A Netherlands study found that 23% of all assisted deaths are not reported. Euthanasia in the Netherlands has been extended to psychiatric conditions. In 2013, euthanasia for psychiatric reasons occurred 45 times.

Recently a former leader of a euthanasia group in the Netherlands stated that the Netherlands euthanasia law has derailed.

A study from Switzerland found that in 16% of the assisted suicide deaths, the person who died had no physical illness.

Some real life stories.

A healthy woman, who was becoming blind, died by euthanasia in the Netherlands because she thought that it would be intolerable to live without knowing if her clothes were clean.

A depressed woman died by euthanasia in Belgium, even after her psychiatrist thought that treatment was possible.

There are many more stories and studies that prove how legalizing euthanasia will have tragic, lethal outcomes.

The Euthanasia Prevention Coalition has found that when people learn more about euthanasia and its consequences, they become more opposed to it.

Society needs to improve how we care for people, rather than approving how to kill people. Note: Alex Schadenberg is the executive director of the Euthanasia Prevention Coalition and you can read his blog here.