Thursday, January 16, 2020

Euthanasia deaths rise quickly in Ontario: Nearly 1800 reported assisted deaths in 2019

Alex Schadenberg
Executive Director

Euthanasia Prevention Coalition

The Ontario Office of the Chief Coroner released the updated data for MAiD (euthanasia and assisted suicide deaths) indicating that from June 17, 2016 until December 31, 2019 there have been 4318 reported assisted deaths in Ontario.

According to the data, there were 1789 reported assisted deaths in 2019, 1499 in 2018, 841 in 2017 and 189 in 2016.

Since there were 109,173 deaths in Ontario in 2019 therefore assisted deaths represented 1.64% of the deaths in 2019. 

There was a significant increase in the second half of 2019 with 1015 reported assisted deaths up from 774 reported assisted deaths in the first half of the year in Ontario.

recent article in the Calgary Herald, reported that there has also been a significant increase in reported assisted deaths in Alberta with 377 in 2019, 307 in 2018, and 206 in 2017.


Sadly, the increase in assisted deaths is also linked to a wider use of the law. Recently an Ontario doctor agreed to speak about his experience with several controversial assisted dying cases published.

I expect a further increase in assisted deaths since a Quebec court struck down the terminal illness requirement in the law. The Quebec court decision was not appealed by the government causing an incremental extension of the law to people who may be psychologically suffering.

After the government did not appeal the Quebec court decision, Prime Minister Trudeau announced that a first priority for the government is to amend Canada's euthanasia law.

The Euthanasia Prevention Coalition (EPC) is urging its supporters to participate in the Canadian Department of Justice Medical Assistance in Dying (MAiD) consultation (Link).

Do you have a personal euthanasia story? Sharing your story may help us prevent other euthanasia deaths. Contact us at: 1-877-439-3348 or info@epcc.ca.

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