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The bill itself is deeply flawed. It raises these questions:
- Why is it acceptable that no psychiatrist is involved when depression is a major driver behind terminally ill patients wanting to die?
- Why doesn’t the model mandate the involvement of a palliative care specialist, so the patient is fully aware of all possibilities of care before killing themselves?
- Why is 6-12 months the defined time frame for death? Doctors are poor at predicting the time a person has to live. New and lifesaving drugs are becoming available all the time.
- Why is it acceptable that the two doctors signing off on a patient’s suicide don’t need to be a treating doctor or even inform the treating doctor?
- Why is it acceptable that there will be no way of knowing the actual circumstances of how a lethal medication will be taken, or indeed if it is taken? Astonishingly, the model only requires self-reporting about what happens with the drug, which could be given without a patient’s knowledge or even handed to someone else.
- Why is it acceptable that under the model a patient’s death certificate will be falsified, recording their terminal illness as the cause of death as opposed to suicide?
Coercion and elder abuse are real and increasingly documented. The overseas experience is that large numbers of people who participate in assisted suicide do so because they fear being a burden.
The biblical commandment, “You shall not kill,” is inviolable. If we break it, we will break ourselves as a community.
Take action today
Using the form below, please write an urgent letter to the Premier your Upper House MPs – it will only take a couple of minutes. Be concise and respectful.
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Thank you for standing up for protecting vulnerable lives.