When asked by The Conversation for a source to support his assertion that findings from the Netherlands Euthanasia Report in 2014 indicate that 550 newborn babies with diseases or disabilities were killed, Luke Formosa sent the following:
I can’t provide an accurate figure, but it is also impossible to know for sure how many cases have been unreported. Because there is evidence to suggest that there are systematic failures occurring and increased extension of permissions for granting euthanasia since it was first introduced.
Refer to documents below for journals revealing the many short comings in the euthanasia system in the Netherlands.
Also, refer to Assisted Suicide and Euthanasia: A Guide to the Evidence, updated August 10, 2015, and compiled by Professor David Albert Jones Director of the Anscombe Bioethics Centre, Oxford.
This document was instrumental to British MPs in providing logical reasons for the rejection of the law to allow doctors to help terminally ill people end their lives - voted against 330 to 118.
Check the sections on the Netherlands (pages 11-12) and Belgium, as both of these countries are reporting cases of systematic failures, with reporting, administering of treatments inappropriately and instances where euthanasia is occurring without consent. This year Belgium made international headlines by legalising euthanasia for children of all ages.
Note on pg 11: The law and practice of euthanasia and assisted suicide in the Netherlands has been criticised twice by the United Nations Human Rights Committee.
In addition to this, the Netherlands introduced mobile euthanasia units to be dispatched to peoples homes. The scheme was introduced by the Dutch Association for a Voluntary End to Life (NVVE). The Royal Dutch Medical Association, a supporter of euthanasia, has reportedly distanced itself from this initiative and the German Hospice foundation has reportedly stated “this is an inhumane proposal” because it has gone too far.
This website also provides a general overview of the slippery slope case for the Netherlands euthanasia laws since their introduction.
Here are some more scientific publications on my main point of the debate the case for the slippery slope as per my comments and basis of argument:
- Medical End-of-Life Decisions for Children in the Netherlands
- Between Palliative Care and Euthanasia
- Neonatal Euthanasia: The Groningen Protocol, American College of Pediatricians
- Euthanasia requests, procedures and outcomes for 100 Belgian patients suffering from psychiatric disorders: a retrospective, descriptive study
- Clinical Problems with the Performance of Euthanasia and Physician-Assisted Suicide in the Netherlands
- The role of nurses in physician-assisted deaths in Belgium
- How assisted suicide advocacy and legalization threaten the lives of vulnerable people
- New research: Majority of disabled people fear change to assisted suicide law
My main concern with euthanasia laws are the instances occurring in countries where it has become normalised. Initially, it began with the terminally ill including consent only and has since extended to include other permissions including psychological illnesses, depression and tired of life and occasions without consent being reported. This could not be more apparent with the laws extending to children of all ages in Belgium.
Authors: The Conversation Contributor