News Roundup

Doctors favour legalising assisted suicide for dying patients

BMJ 2004; 329 doi: (Published 21 October 2004) Cite this as: BMJ 2004;329:939
  1. Zosia Kmietowicz
  1. London

    Just over half of British doctors questioned in a survey say they would welcome a law that allows them to help terminally ill people to end their life.

    The survey, by the research organisation Medix UK, also found that 45% of the 1000 doctors questioned believe their colleagues are helping terminally ill patients to die. But as the law currently stands, their actions put them at risk of life imprisonment every time.

    Over a quarter of the doctors surveyed (27%) said they had been asked by a patient for help to die.

    Altogether, 56% of doctors said they were in favour of legislation to allow assisted suicide for terminally ill patients, provided there were stringent safeguards and national guidelines. Just under …

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