Ontario has passed detailed new legislation to facilitate Medical Assistance in Dying in the province.
Earlier this month, lawmakers voted overwhelmingly in favour of what is known as “Bill 84” – a bill that amends six several Ontario laws that potentially impede the implementation of federal law on euthanasia.
Among the various provisions, Bill 84 ensures that patients who receive euthanasia will be eligible for insurance and workplace safety benefits. Their deaths will not be documented as suicide, but rather will be attributed to an underlying illness or condition.
The legislation also limits public access to identifiable information on individuals and facilities who provide MAID, and ensures that practitioners and institutions are protected from civil liability, except in the case of negligence.
“It is critical that end-of-life care, including medical assistance in dying, is provided safely and compassionately”, Dr Eric Hoskins, Minister of Health and Long-Term Care, said. “This legislation will help ensure that patients, health care providers and health care institutions have more clarity and effective legal protection when medical assistance in dying takes place.”
Critics of the bill argue that it fails to provide adequate exemptions for practitioners who conscientious object to participation in MAID.
A group of Ontario-based healthcare professionals held a press conference at the Ontario Legislative Building early this week, telling reporters that law could force practitioners to leave the profession because of their conscientious objection to euthanasia.
Saturday, May 20, 2017
The Economist is the world’s best news magazine. Its stylish, intelligent and well-informed coverage has made it the Bible of the global elite. “I used to think. Now I just read The Economist,” the former CEO of Oracle, Larry Ellison, once said.
Part of its appeal is its ideological consistency. Ever since 1843 The Economist has argued that aim of public policy should be to promote the market economy as the best way of achieving prosperity and democracy. A light touch of government regulation is needed only to ensure fairness and legal certainty. Thus it embodies the “classical 19th-century Liberal ideas” which made Britain, and later the United States, a bulwark of capitalism.
Whatever the merits of this ideology in framing public policy for economics and finance, it is ill-suited to questions of personal behaviour.
In principle The Economist supports all autonomous action which is either harmless (in its view) or profitable. Hence, in recent years it has thrown its considerable prestige behind campaigns for the legalisation and regulation of drugs, pornography, prostitution, euthanasia, and same-sex marriage.
And this month it has taken up cudgels in favour of an international market in surrogate mothers and babies. “Carrying a child for someone else should be celebrated—and paid”, is the defiant headline of its editorial. Given the magazine’s influence, this is a significant development. What do you think of it?
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