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Physician-assisted suicide

BMJ 1998; 316 doi: (Published 16 May 1998) Cite this as: BMJ 1998;316:1543
  1. Johannes JM van Delden, nursing home physician and senior bioethics researcher
  1. Centre for Bioethics and Health Law, Utrecht University, Netherlands

    Ed Robert F Weir Indiana University Press, £24.95, pp 266 ISBN 0 253 33282 6

    During the first Dutch study into euthanasia and other end-of-life decisions (for the Remmelink committee in 1991), we asked doctors involved in euthanasia cases why they chose euthanasia instead of assisted suicide and vice versa.

    Most respondents had strong opinions about how they complied (if at all) with patients' requests to end their life. Doctors who performed euthanasia regarded asking patients to take the deadly drugs themselves, as in assisted suicide, as abandoning them at the “moment supreme.” On the other hand, doctors who …

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