Canada’s Medical Assistance in Dying (MAiD) act began to operate in 2016. It is a laboratory for how legalised euthanasia will operate in a largely English-speaking country. And, according to an article in the journal Palliative Care written by five Canadian specialists, it has had a very negative effect upon palliative care.
The authors interviewed 13 doctors and 10 nurses about their impressions. Some of the feedback is unexpected.
First, all of them spoke about an inherent conflict between the provision of palliative care (PC) and eligibility for MAiD. To ensure that their patients remained eligible, they had to withhold medications which would have otherwise removed or alleviated their pain. “Maintaining lucidity and eligibility for assisted death, by avoiding sedative medications, took priority over achieving good symptom control for some patients,” they write. Both the patients and the PC providers found this distressing.
"13 #doctors and 10 #nurses… spoke about an inherent #conflict between the provision of #palliativecare (PC) and eligibility for #MAiD. To ensure that their #patients remained #eligible, they had to withhold [#pain] #medications" https://t.co/xd1X3UHJXU#nursing #medical #VAD
— BioEdge (@bioedge) November 8, 2021