Plan to exclude mental illnesses from assisted-dying criteria prompts legal, moral questions

Plan to exclude mental illnesses from assisted-dying criteria prompts legal, moral questions
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TORONTO —
A proposed change to the federal assisted-dying law would explicitly state that medically assisted death could not be obtained for a patient with mental health concerns, angering some psychiatrists.

However, other psychiatrists are concerned that allowing assisted death on grounds of mental illness equates to allowing them to kill their patients – something they see as very dissimilar to relieving the suffering of patients with terminal physical conditions.

Bill C-7, the first significant modification to the assisted-dying law since it came into effect in 2016, is currently sitting with the House of Commons justice committee.

In addition to removing the requirement that a recipient’s death must be reasonably foreseeable, the bill would explicitly ban…



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