The Quebec government in Canada has announced plans to allow doctors to euthanize certain patients without their active consent.
The government has opened non-partisan public consultations before deciding whether to proceed with the change that has been described as “absolutely crazy” and means people will be killed against their will, according to critics of the recommendations.
Québec’s Health minister Danielle McCann announced plans Friday to allow doctors to euthanize people with Alzheimer’s, dementia, and other degenerative diseases who are no longer able to give their consent.
McCann announced at the press conference that all parties support consultations on the recommendations of an expert panel that spent 18 months studying the issue of “prior consent”, reported the Montreal Gazette.
The panel recommended that individuals who received a diagnosis of a serious and incurable illness, including Alzheimer’s or dementia, can give an advance directive to be killed at some future time, even if they become incapable of changing their mind.
It also recommended “authorizing a third party to inform physicians of the existence of a prior consent in the event a person loses their faculties. The third party authorization would be kept in a government registry as a permanent record,” the Gazette reported.
LifeSite report: Quebec’s current euthanasia law specifies that Quebecers cannot be euthanized unless they fulfill all the following criteria: They are at least 18 years of age; suffer from a serious, incurable illness; are in an advanced state of irreversible decline in capability; experience constant and unbearable physical or psychological suffering that cannot be relieved in a way they deem tolerable; are at the end of life; and can give informed consent.
“We dedicate this announcement to all those Quebecers living with serious and incurable illnesses and who are saddled with persistent and intolerable suffering,” McCann said at the conference.
“We are giving them the power and the freedom to decide and we do this while respecting their will, values and dignity,” she added.
But Alex Schadenberg, executive director of the Euthanasia Prevention Coalition, warned that advance directives means people will be killed against their will.
‘THIS IS ABSOLUTELY CRAZY’
“This is absolutely crazy, because it will allow euthanasia of someone who may never have wanted it, who might have in fear in an earlier state felt this was what they wanted, and when the time comes, they lose their right to change their mind,” he told LifeSiteNews.
The euthanasia lobbyists say “it’s all about freedom of choice and autonomy, that’s how they sell it. But once you become incompetent, you won’t have a right to change your mind, and this becomes the problem,” added Schadenberg.
Schadenberg’s concerns are echoed by Quebec anti-euthanasia group Vivre dans la Dignité.
Quebec’s current law requires that people be allowed to change their minds “until the last moment,” it said in a press release rejecting the panel’s recommendations.
“A new incapacity implies that we can no longer respond to this demand, often to the displeasure of relatives,” the Vivre dans la Dignité statement said.
“But this principle of consent to the end is paramount,” it stressed. “Remember that it makes the difference between execution and euthanasia.”
Indeed, advance directives led to the horror of a 74-year-old Dutch woman being forcibly euthanized in 2016, Schadenberg pointed out.