Monday, October 7, 2013

A healthy blind woman dies by euthanasia in the Netherlands

The Daily Mail reported that, for the first time, a blind woman was euthanized in the Netherlands.

The article reported that:
Dutch medics have killed a woman by lethal injection after she went blind – in Holland’s first case of euthanasia for a disability. 
The unnamed 70-year-old woman was deemed by two doctors to be ‘suffering unbearably’ as a result of her blindness and her wish to die was granted. 
She had previously tried to comment suicide ‘several times’, according to Trouw, a Dutch newspaper. 
The woman had been born with poor eyesight which had deteriorated into blindness as she entered old age. She had lived alone since her husband died.
Amy Hasbrouck, the leader of Tourjours Vivant - Not Dead Yet (TVNDY), is legally blind. The TVNDY website states that:
People with disabilities and chronic illnesses and seniors are the people most directly affected by assisted suicide, euthanasia, and other practices of the end of life.
DutchNews.nl reported that Health specialist Lia Bruin told Amsterdam-based Trouw that the case was ‘exceptional’.
'She was, for example, obsessed by cleanliness and could not stand being unable to see spots on her clothes,' Bruin said.
Peter Saunders
The Daily Mail article interviewed Dr. Peter Saunders, campaign director for the Care Not Killing Alliance UK who stated:
‘Euthanasia in the Netherlands is way out of control. ... 
‘What we are seeing in the Netherlands is more accurately termed 'incremental extension', the steady intentional escalation of numbers with a gradual widening of the categories of patients to be included.’  
‘The lessons are clear. Once you relax the law on euthanasia or assisted suicide steady extension will follow as night follows day.’
The Daily Mail article continued by stating:
Most euthanasia cases in Holland involve cancer patients but increasingly that have included dementia sufferers and even psychiatric patients. 
In 2005, however, the Groningen Protocol protected doctors from being prosecuted for the euthanasia of infants as long as they followed approved guidelines. 
Euthanasia is carried out by administering a strong sedative to put the patient in a coma, followed by a drug to stop breathing and cause death. 
Holland is following a pattern of incremental euthanasia deaths wherever the practice has been legalised. 
Last year, Belgium, where euthanasia came into force in 2003, saw a 25 per cent increase in the number of euthanasia deaths, leaping from 1,133 in 2011 to 1,432, a figure representing about two per cent of all deaths in the country. 
Last month Nancy Verhelst, 44, was legally killed by euthanasia after doctors botched her sex change operation, leaving her with physical deformities she felt made her look like a ‘monster’. 
The doctors who killed her - David Dufour and Vim Distelmans – were the same men who killed the Verbessem twins.  
This week the Belgian parliament will discuss proposals to extend euthanasia to children, dementia sufferers and people with long-term illnesses.
Dr Peter Saunders and Amy Hasbrouck will both be speaking at the Euthanasia Symposium 2013 - November 8/9 in Toronto.

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