The Death Of A Physician Assisted Dying Essay examples

1231 Words Jun 27th, 2016 5 Pages
Belgium, which is a well- known liberal country, is also well known throughout Europe for their controversy of physician assisted dying. Prior to 2002, Belgium had no legal guidelines in regards to euthanasia. In order to uncover how popular physician assisted dying is in Belgium in comparison to other European countries, a study conducted by Agnes van der Heide (2003), a professor in Decision making and care at the end of life, compared 20 480 deaths throughout six European countries. Of the deaths studied, van der Heide’s research uncovered that “administration of drugs with the explicit intention of hastening death varied between countries: about 1% or less in Denmark, Italy, Sweden, and Switzerland, 82% in Belgium, and 40% in the Netherlands” (p. 349). Jean-Louis Vincent (2006), a professor of intensive care at the University of Brussels notes that “a study performed several years ago in Belgium which reviewed some 4,000 death certificates reported that death was unexpected in one-third of the cases, but that an end-of-life decision was made in 39.3% of the deaths” (p. 1908). Due to the fact that Belgium’s physicians had no regulations to follow prior to 2002, they had a strikingly high rate of death caused by administration of lethal drugs. This paper will over look Belgium’s history of euthanasia before their legislature in 2002, after their legislature in 2002 and their new amendment, which came into effect in 2014. Belgium is changing the way that the rest of the…

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