Thousands of elderly people have been killed by their own GPs without ever asking to die under Belgium’s euthanasia laws, an academic report said yesterday.
It said that around one in every 60 deaths of a patient under GP care involves someone who has not requested euthanasia.
Half of the patients killed without giving their consent were over the age of 80, the study found, and two thirds of them were in hospital and were not suffering from a terminal disease such as cancer.
In about four out of five of the cases, the death was not discussed with patients subjected to ‘involuntary euthanasia’ because they were either in a coma, they were diagnosed with dementia, or because doctors decided it would not be in their best interests to discuss the matter with them.
Very often doctors would not inform the families of plans to lethally inject a relation because they considered it a medical decision to be made by themselves alone, the report published by the Journal of Medical Ethics said.
Just no such thing as acceptance of one practice leading on to acceptance of the next step along.
What was it Harold Shipman was jailed for again? And would we have to offer him a posthumous pardon?