Intended for healthcare professionals


Euthanasia endorsed in Dutch patient with dementia

BMJ 1999; 319 doi: (Published 10 July 1999) Cite this as: BMJ 1999;319:75
  1. Tony Sheldon
  1. Utrecht

    A doctor in the Netherlands has not been prosecuted for helping an elderly patient with vascular dementia to die. The psychiatric patient was considered to have been competent to request assisted suicide and the procedure was judged to be medically and legally sound.

    The facts were reported in a rare case history in a Dutch medical journal (Nederlands Tijdschrift Voor Geneeskunde 1999;143:17). Dutch law states that doctors can avoid prosecution for assisted suicide only if their patient has persistently made …

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