A July 31, 2015 article in Medscape (a subscription website for medical professionals) titled “Assisted Suicide for Mental Illness Gaining Ground” admits that:
“Euthanasia (referred to as assisted suicide in the Netherlands and Luxembourg, where it is also legal in cases involving suffering due to medical and psychiatric illness) has been legal since 2002 in Belgium, and the law was extended in 2014 to include emancipated children with suffering due to terminal illness.
Through a required process, patients must show their illness to cause “unbearable or untreatable suffering”; however, the definition is acknowledged to be subjective, Dr Thienpont told Medscape Medical News.
“By its nature, the extent to which the suffering is unbearable must be determined from the perspective of the patient him- or herself and may depend on his or her physical and mental strength and personality,” said Dr Thienpont.
Despite the ongoing criticism that very few assisted suicide requests in the US are referred for psychological/psychiatric consultations, this article examines a July 27, 2015 British Medical Journal article ““Euthanasia requests, procedures and outcomes for 100 Belgian patients suffering from psychiatric disorders: a retrospective, descriptive study” that tries to make the case that mental illness itself can be grounds for assisted suicide.
In the meantime, an Irish website thejournal.ie has an August 2, 2015 poll asking “Poll: Would you consider euthanasia while still healthy?” based on a story about a healthy nurse who legally ended her life in a Swiss clinic:
“A HEALTHY NURSE from England has opted to die via assisted suicide, rather than growing old.
Gill Pharaoh (75), a former palliative care nurse, chose to die at a Swiss clinic so she wouldn’t become a burden on her family or the health service.
In an interview with the Sunday Times shortly before her death, Pharaoh said her children struggled to cope with her decision, but understand where she is coming from.
Her husband accompanied her to the clinic.”
Unfortunately, the countries in Europe that have legalized euthanasia/assisted suicide apparently are the “canaries in the mine” warning us of a relentless march towards the acceptance of euthanasia on demand in the US and potentially worldwide.