Intended for healthcare professionals


Patient Commentary: “I don’t want to go to Switzerland, and I don’t want to attempt suicide”

BMJ 2018; 360 doi: (Published 07 February 2018) Cite this as: BMJ 2018;360:k542
  1. Sarah Jessiman, Rugby, UK
  1. Ellie.Ball{at}

My name is Sarah Jessiman, and I’m a positive person doing my best to live well with terminal cancer at 51 years of age. I want to explain why I think doctors should support the campaign to legalise assisted dying in the UK. Perhaps this seems odd, coming from someone prepared to endure all kinds of arduous treatments to stay alive.

My reasons for wanting the choice of an assisted death are simple and shared by many patients in similar situations. I’m terrified of the sort of death I may have to face. I would draw huge comfort from knowing that I could say “enough” …

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