Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Baroness Warnock says that: Doctors who refuse euthanasia are wicked

Baroness Warnock, the infamous politician and ethicist in the UK, who stated last September that people with dementia had a duty to die has now stated that:
DOCTORS who refuse to help terminally ill patients to kill themselves when they request to die are "genuinely wicked"

Warnock defended her position the euthanasia and assisted suicide should be legalized in the UK on Monday, January 5 at the Northern Ireland Forum for Ethics in Medicine and Healthcare, a multi-disciplinary group which seeks to promote an awareness of ethical issues that arise in the delivery of health and social care in Belfast.

Warnock further stated that:
doctors and nurses should encourage terminally ill patients to decide, while still relatively healthy, whether to be helped commit suicide when they reach a seriously ill state.

The idea of preparing people for assisted suicide will lead to a pressure upon people who do not have social support to "choose" death.

The article stated that fears were raised that doctors could be asked to become "executioners" for the old and dying.

Warnock re-phrased her duty to die concept for people with dementia by stating:
"I believe that if someone is diagnosed as having the beginnings of Alzheimer's or dementia, at that stage it is a positive duty that doctors should talk to them about what will happen when the moment comes where they reach steep decline." ...

"They can be kept alive and are kept alive, but the question has to be: What is the point of the life at the last stages of Alzheimer's or dementia?"

Link to Warnock's previous statements on the duty to die for people with dementia.

The article stated that Dr Idris Baker, who is a consultant in palliative medicine in Cardiff, gave a speech against euthanasia.

It is interesting that none of the comments by Dr. Baker were published in the article.

The article did state that: A confidential survey of every GP in Northern Ireland by the British Journal of Medical Practice in 2000 found that 70 per cent of GPs would not assist someone to die.

Warnock will speak about voluntary euthanasia in one comment and then state that people have a duty to die in another comment.

Warnock's comments relate closely to the comments by Peter Singer, the Princeton University chair in bioethics who believes that only beings that are self-aware should be considered persons. Thus when you lose a certain level of self-awareness, society stops being responsible for your care or your life.

Baroness Warnock needs to be taken very seriously. Her attitudes promote an acceptance of killing the most vulnerable people in our community and they also create a feeling among the frail elderly that they are not valued and their lives are not worth living.

Society needs to uphold the elderly and treat them with respect and dignity. We need to care for people with dementia, not kill them.

Link to the original article:

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