We can obtain medical assistance in dying in Quebec even once incapacitated

We can obtain medical assistance in dying in Quebec even once incapacitated
We can obtain medical assistance in dying in Quebec even once incapacitated

The province will modify article 29 of the law concerning end-of-life care to allow it, announced Thursday in a joint press release the government of François Legault and all the opposition parties.

The patients concerned will therefore be less inclined to anticipate the fateful moment for fear of becoming unfit, believe the Quebec parliamentarians. They should also be in less pain when that time comes, as they will no longer feel the need to stop taking their medication for the same reason, they hope.

We want to allow these people to have a more serene end of life, said Christian Dubé, Minister of Health and Social Services, in the press release.

The whole heart of the thinking that led to the End-of-Life Care Act was to prevent people from intolerable suffering. The amendment will make this desire even better assured.

A quote from:Véronique Hivon, PQ MP, who has been working on this issue for 11 years

There was reluctance among doctors to provide medical assistance in dying with someone who may no longer be perfectly fit., noted Ms. Hivon in an interview with 24•60 at ICI RDI. And there, we come to clarify that in a circumstance like this, there will be no more stake. Everything is clear: doctors can proceed.

It’s exceptional, nevertheless, there have been about a hundred people to whom it happened to lose their ability, she admitted. But it is still, for these 100 people, extremely difficult.

There are also people to whom this has not happened, but who anticipated, who were afraid that it would happen to them, and therefore who brought forward the date of medical assistance in dying., continued the PQ member for Joliette. They could say, for example: “Me, I would have waited to be sure that my daughter who lives in Vancouver, who lives in Paris, came to see me first, but I’m so scared, because of the doses given to me. , to lose my mind completely that I will bring the date forward. “

Véronique Hivon and the then Minister of Health, the Liberal Gaétan Barrette, had jointly worked on drafting the Act respecting end-of-life care. For Ms. Hivon, the adoption of this law in 2014 was the culmination of nearly five years of work.

Véronique Hivon has been working on the issue of medical assistance in dying for 11 years now.

Photo: Radio-Canada / Ivanoh Demers

Transpartisan collaboration

Liberal MP Marie Montpetit assured that the new amendment will prevent unnecessary suffering for people at the end of their life and further distress for their families. Testimonies from doctors and bereaved families demonstrated the need for action.

Compassion guided our decision.

A quote from:Marie Montpetit, Liberal MP

It is a step forward for the right to die with dignity, a clarification that will relieve many doctors, patients and families., added Gabriel Nadeau-Dubois, of Québec solidaire.

Véronique Hivon welcomed the collaboration between the different political parties on this issue.

We worked well together, with partners in the field […] and therefore, we arrived with this amendment which was adopted in committee yesterday, and today in a bill.

A quote from:Véronique Hivon, member of the PQ, in an interview at 24 • 60

The Collège des médecins du Québec had filed a brief before the Special Commission on the Evolution of the Law on End-of-Life Care, two weeks ago, in particular to criticize the obligation for Quebecers to give fair final consent. before the administration of theADMMedical assistance in dying and, more generally, the coexistence of Quebec and Canadian laws discordant on certain aspects.

The College had thus demanded that the Quebec law, nicknamed Dying with dignity and adopted seven years ago, be rapidly harmonized with that of Canada, which came into force at the end of last winter. Since then, the Criminal Code of Canada has made it possible to avoid the requirement to provide final consent.

The change announced Thursday is not, however, part of the work of the special commission set up at the end of March, said Minister Dubé. It has more of a mandate to study the issues related to the expansion of medical assistance in dying for people in a situation of incapacity, such as Alzheimer’s, and people suffering from mental disorders., he recalled.

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