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Leading campaigner for legalising assisted suicide dies from starvation

BMJ 2014; 349 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.g7872 (Published 31 December 2014) Cite this as: BMJ 2014;349:g7872
  1. Clare Dyer
  1. 1The BMJ

Debbie Purdy, the leading campaigner and activist for the legalisation of assisted suicide in the United Kingdom, has died at the age of 51 after starving herself to death.

Purdy, who had primary progressive multiple sclerosis, ended her life on 23 December in the Marie Curie hospice in Bradford, West Yorkshire, by refusing food. In her final interview with the BBC last July she said that she had taken the decision in December 2013 to die by refusing to eat but had found it “so much more difficult than I thought it would be.”

She first hit the headlines in …

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