Saturday, December 17, 2005

Euthanasia progress in Switzerland


A hospital in Switzerland says it will allow euthanasia on its premises to the terminally ill. It will be the first in that country to allow the practice. Since 1940 has always been carried out in homes.

Assisted suicide is permitted under Swiss law, but until now hospitals have refused to allow euthanasia to be committed on site. The hastened death can legally be carried out either by a doctor or a non-doctor but most people agree that medical assistance is preferable.

From the start of next year, terminally ill patients in Lausanne's main hospital will be able to take their own lives on hospital premises. Officials say strict controls will still apply.

The patient must be of sound mind, be already too ill to have returned home and have expressed a persistent wish to die.

Senior doctors at the hospital say the decision has come after almost three years of consideration. +++

NOTE: The word 'euthanasia' is a generic term for all forms of hastened, peaceful, painless death. D.H

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