Euthanasia, assisted suicide and psychiatry: a Pandora's box
Citation:Kelly, B.D., McLoughlin, D.M., Euthanasia, assisted suicide and psychiatry: a Pandora's box, Journal of Psychiatry, 181, 4, 2002, 278-279
Euthanasia, assisted suicide and psychiatry - a Pandora's box.pdf (published (publisher copy) peer-reviewed) 64.11Kb
Euthanasia has been defined as `the bringing about of a gentle and easy death for someone suffering from an incurable and painful disease or in an irreversible coma? (Pearsall & Trumble, 1996). It accounts for nearly 2% of all deaths in The Netherlands, where the indications include intractable suffering (Huyse & van Tilburg, 1993), and in April 2001 that country became the first to legalise the practice fully. Since approval of the Death with Dignity Act, initially in 1994 and again in 1997, the state of Oregon in the USA has allowed medically assisted suicide, where the physician may provide a patient with lethal drugs but may not actually administer them. The US Attorney General has recently attempted to stop this practice ? a move opposed by the Oregon Medical Association. Laws permitting euthanasia were introduced in Australia's Northern Territory in 1995 but were overturned by the Australian senate 2 years later. Increasingly, mental health professionals are being challenged to consider their role in end-of-life decisions.
Type of material:Journal Article
Series/Report no:Journal of Psychiatry
Availability:Full text available