Thursday, 5 March 2015

“It would be as much complicit in the action as actually doing it”

The National Post wrote an article last month on the effect decriminalizing physician assisted suicide would have on physicians who are morally opposed to the practice of euthanasia, 

“This is a question of whether people who have certain creeds or religious beliefs should be protected in law from the desire of a regulator to basically drive us out of the practice of medicine,” says Larry Worthen, executive director of the Christian Medical and Dental Society, which represents more than 1,500 doctors across Canada. “We’re simply saying there’s certain procedures we cannot participate in because of conscience and religious freedom. That’s in the Charter of Rights and Freedoms.”
For their part, some physicians may have already had enough. Mr. Worthen said he knows of several doctors who plan to retire early in order to avoid having to carry out procedures that conflict with their beliefs.
Others are pouring their concerns onto the college’s online forum.
“Faced with a request for assisted suicide from a patient, I would be required, by this college policy, to refer them to a physician who is ‘non-objecting, available and accessible’ to facilitate the assisted suicide. This in conscience I could not do,” wrote one doctor on Jan. 23.
“It would be as much complicit in the action as actually doing it,” wrote another on Jan. 5.