Assisted Dying Rejected

Assisted dying bill overwhelmingly rejected by MPs

After the debate, MPs vote 330 to 118 against changing law, in first Commons vote on assisted dying for 20 years. The House of Commons rejected the assisted dying bill introduced by Rob Marris, a Labour MP

The house of Lords discussed the arguments in the last parliament, when Lord Falconer introduced an assisted dying bill that would have allowed doctors to prescribe a lethal dose to terminally ill patients judged to have less than six months to live. They were evenly split when the bill was given its second  reading and the legislation was nodded through to committee stage without division. 

However, it was held up by amendments and ran out of time before the end of the last parliament. After the election, Falconer suggested his proposals would have more of a chance if they were taken up by an MP in the Commons.Even if MPs had voted in favour, the bill had only a slim chance of becoming law because David Cameron had indicated he was not in favour of legalising assisted dying. Any private member’s bill needs some degree of support from the government to allow it time for debate.

Do they spport the Bill to get Repurposing?

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  • I was greatly in favour of allowing this until last year when I saw how the NHS copes with terminally ill patients. My brother-in-law had end-stage liver disease. He could not feed himself, was doubly incontinent, needed 24-hour nursing care and was clearly in the last weeks of life. You would have thought he would have qualified for the 'Continuing Care' of the NHS, i.e. being looked after in a suitable establishment with costs paid for by NHS. Not so!!! I could not believe the process his wife had to go through to try and get this. He 'didn't qualify' – I can't remember the reason given but it was rubbish, anyway! She therefore faced a weekly bill of £1000+ . Then amazingly, at the nursing home one day an inspector arrived to do a spot check. He looked at the paperwork for each patient, saw my brother-in-law's notes and immediately reversed the funding decision. Assisted dying may well be desirable ethically but it couldn't work in our system. Abuse would be inevitable. It could only be safe under a healthcare system where assisted dying would be cost-neutral.

    • "Assisted dying may well be desirable ethically but it couldn't work in our system. Abuse would be inevitable."
      It is certainly not beyond the wit of our legal and medical experts to ensure this would not be the case. However, the cowardice of our politicians and the meddling of the religious lobby ensures that the wishes of 80% of the population are ignored. People at the end of their lives need choice, most would not take the option of assisted dying if the experience of places where it is in place are repeated here but it is a source of comfort to know that the option ids there should people's situation become intolerable.

    • Where do you get the statistic 80% of the population? We often think we would rather die than be unable to look after ourselves, but in reality it changes as the circumstance alters. Can a doctor truly be accurate in giving someone 6 months to live? Can doctors be sure the patient hasn't been cajoled into the decision? What happened to where there is life there is hope? I wasn't sure, until I watched the video of the brave man on the BBC website who had MND and he was against this bill. If he says no then so do I.

    • the docs can get it wrong with the 'time you have' ,from experience the advice that 50% of patients die in 6-9 months was slightly askew for my Mother she lived 7 years and 2 months into retirement and beyond with her suffering limited to a terminal phase only. There is in my opinion a scenario that calls for compassionate relief of cruel suffering . My daughter had no fluids for 17 days, no food, no independent movement and little pain relief . No offer of MS palliative specialist support dying at home, medieval death in the 21st Century and it is deemed " regrettably distressing ". Reality is very different from an imagined death on an imagined day with yourself exercising choice/control before gently closing your eyes.

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