Euthanasia Newborns: Protocol of Groningen
Publié le : 05/02/2015
NEW ! Dossier : Now available in English
Until now, only three countries in the world have decriminalised euthanasia: the Netherlands, Belgium and Luxembourg. This practice is available only to people who are mentally competent when they apply (if necessary, via a declaration in advance requesting euthanasia).
A notable exception to the voluntary nature of the request for euthanasia concerns newborns who face suffering that is deemed intolerable and who have no prospect of enjoying an acceptable “quality of life” at any point in the future. In a text written in 2004, entitled the Groningen Protocol, Professor Eduard Verhagen, Head of the Department of Paediatrics at the Medical Center of the University of Groningen in the Netherlands, provides criteria to enable doctors to deliberately end the life of severely ill newborns.
First we outline the content of the Groningen Protocol, specify its legal status in the Netherlands and present several statistics. Then we review the main criticisms of the Protocol. Finally, the issue of withholding futile medical care in the specific case of newborns is discussed.
- Euthanasie et suicide assistéCe nouveau Dossier de l'IEB présente le Protocole de Groningen, adopté aux Pays-Bas pour l'euthanasie des nouveau-nés atteints d'une grave affection et dont la "qualité de vie" est estimée insatisfaisante. Après l'exposé de la teneur du protocole de Groningen, de son statut juridique aux Pays-Bas et de quelques statistiques, les principales critiques adressées audit protocole sont passées en revue. Enfin, la question de l'acharnement thérapeutique dans le cas spécifique des nouveau-nés est évo...
- Euthanasie et suicide assistéExclusive Dossier now available also in English!
May 28, 2012 marks the 10th anniversary of the legalisation of euthanasia in Belgium, with the Netherlands following suit a year earlier and Luxembourg doing the same in 2009.
To date, these three Benelux countries are the only ones to have legalised the act of intentionally killing a person who makes such a request. At a time when legalisation of euthanasia is being debated in several European countries, notably in France, it would appear...
- Euthanasie et suicide assistéDr Sarah Van Laer, who has euthanased 28 patients since legalisation in 2002, has complained bitterly to the Belgian newspaper De Standaard about the burdens of her work.
"It's too much for me. Lately I'm averaging one second opinion a week. Once a month, I am asked to perform the euthanasia itself... Recently I was called urgently for a patient who had been promised that euthanasia would take place that evening. But the doctor would not do it. When I came in I said I had come to see how...