The Mercury Hot Topic, “RIGHT TO DIE” on Monday 5 September 2011 on page 15, included this article by Dr Noel Roberts (Lenah Valley), “Terminally ill deserve support”:
Neil Francis (Letters, September 1) supports euthanasia on the basis of quality of life considerations.
He mentions that in jurisdictions where it is legal, the loss of participation in life’s activities is the reason given by 75 percent of those requesting euthanasia.
This situation is all the more reason for upgrading palliative care, which not only alleviates the pain but just as importantly renders emotional support and in many cases allows people to continue their participation in life.
Fear of a diminished life and a sense of being a burden to others as death approaches is natural, but to see euthanasia as a dignified response is misguided.
Persons who are suffering are the same person they were before their illness and warrant our support and protection.
The laws and safeguards that have been put in place in the few countries that have legalised euthanasia are regularly ignored and transgressed.
There is no way of regulating “intentional killing”.
I refer readers to an article in Current Oncology Vol 18 No 2 “Legalising euthanasia or assisted suicide: the illusion of safeguards and controls.”
– Dr Noel Roberts (Lenah Valley) The Mercury, Monday 5 September, page 15