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Old 28.11.2020, 08:41
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Re: EXIT would you consider being a member?

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The point is that, in Switzerland, euthanasia is illegal, while assisted suicide is legal.

The assistance includes such things as making the arrangements possible (including obtaining and transporting the drug), but not, not ever, putting the drug into another person's body.

The person who wishes to die has to
  • take the drug themselves. A wholly paralysed person cannot do this.
  • know what he/she is doing. A demented person cannot do this.

A person who is of clear mind and able enough body can take the drug themselves.

Exit tries to provide for the possibility that one may wish to die but no longer be of sound mind. They do this with an option in the Living Will. The closest option they provide is that anyone of clear mind can specify, in advance, that if ever they become demented, food and fluids should be stopped, and they should be given whatever permissible non-lethal medication(pain-killiers, tranqulisers, opiates) necessary to keep them out of pain while dying, over a period of days or weeks, of starvation and thirst. Hopefully, they don't actually feel the suffering.
Thanks, good post - made me realise my post didn't say what I intended. I meant the person could not clearly communicate, rather than had changed their mind.

I think the issue is the level of communication and understanding required.

If someone has made a clear advance directive, then the test should be whether they have now changed their mind, not whether they fully understand in depth the implications of the choice.

The whole point is that they planned the decision when they did understand, in the full knowledge that this would be a problem later on and wanting to stay as long as possible but no longer.

Many people with dementia are clearly distressed with their situation, and still capable of understanding that taking some pills will end it. I don't think at this stage requiring them to show they understand the legal and moral implications of suicide is useful.
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