Friday, July 24, 2015

Netherlands euthanasia clinic specializes in psychiatric patients.

Alex Schadenberg
By Alex Schadenberg
International Chair - Euthanasia Prevention Coalition

The Dutch media has reported that the Netherlands euthanasia clinic euthanised 18 people with psychiatric conditions in the first half of this year, more than double the number of psychiatric euthanasia deaths in 2014.

The media reported:

In the first six months of this year, 18 people with severe psychiatric problems have been helped to die at a special euthanasia clinic, the NRC said on Thursday. 
This is more than double the total figure of 17 in 2014 as a whole, the clinic’s first half figures show. 
In addition, almost 100 psychiatric patients are on the waiting list for help, the NRC said. This is because of a shortage of psychiatrists to make the assessments and manage the requests. 
The clinic was set up in 2012 to help people whose doctors are unwilling to grant euthanasia requests, and operates a nationwide network of teams made up of doctors and nurses.
The Euthanasia Prevention Coalition predicted that the Dutch euthanasia clinic would focus on people with disabilities, those who lacked mobility and those with psychiatric conditions.

The 2013 Netherlands euthanasia report stated that there were 42 reported euthanasia deaths of people with psychiatric problems and 97 reported euthanasia deaths of people with dementia. The number of reported euthanasia deaths was up by 15% to 4829 in 2013.

Theo Boer
Last year, Professor Theo Boer, an ethicist and nine year member of a Regional Euthanasia Review Committee in the Netherlands, stated:
I used to be a supporter of legislation. But now, with twelve years of experience, I take a different view.

At the very least, wait for an honest and intellectually satisfying analysis of the reasons behind the explosive increase in the numbers. Is it because the law should have had better safeguards? Or is it because the mere existence of such a law is an invitation to see assisted suicide and euthanasia as a normality instead of a last resort? Before those questions are answered, don’t go there.
 
Once the genie is out of the bottle, it is not likely to ever go back in again.
It appears that the euthanasia genie is out of the bottle in the Netherlands. Let us take Professor Boer's advice by rejecting euthanasia everywhere.

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