Half of Dutch GP’s have felt pressured by relatives to euthanize a patient

Editor’s note. This appears on the fine blog of Alex Schadenberg, executive director of the Euthanasia Prevention Coalition.

An article in today’s DutchNews.nl reports that nearly half of the GP’s in the Netherlands have felt pressured by relatives to lethally inject a patient while 20% are willing to euthanize a person who is simply “Tired of Living.”  The article states that according to a survey of 800 family doctors in the Netherlands that was done for the television programme EénVandaag:

– 20% are willing to help a patient who is “tired of life.” – One third of doctors have refused to carry out a euthanasia request over the past five years. – almost 75% said they were unwilling to carry out euthanasia on someone who is worried about unbearable suffering in the future. – Just under 70% of the doctors polled said they had actually carried out euthanasia on a patient over the past five years. – Around half of the GPs questioned said they had felt pressured by patients or their relatives to die by euthanasia.

It is important to note that the Dutch claim to have a strict euthanasia law, but the facts show otherwise

In the Netherlands, euthanasia deaths increased by 13% in 2009; the most recent study shows that every year there are about 550 deaths without explicit request or consent; and nearly 20% of all euthanasia deaths are not reported.

Another recent article explained how the euthanasia of people with dementia has now become accepted in the Netherlands  Now this poll has found that almost half of the Dutch GP’s feel pressured from relatives to euthanize patients.  The concepts of safeguards, choice and autonomy are only really only the slogans that the euthanasia lobby use. 

In reality safeguards are simply barriers to be overcome, choice is only for the few and when did autonomy have anything to do with the decision by a doctor to lethally inject their patient

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