Spain approves a bill to legalize euthanasia and assisted suicide

Yesterday, the new government of Spain, led by the Socialists, approved a bill to legalize euthanasia and assisted suicide. All the forces of the Chamber supported this decision.

Spain approves a bill to legalize euthanasia

Parties of the PP, UPN, Foro Asturias, and Vox disagreed with this project.

After two early elections in the last year that frustrated the government’s efforts to change the law, the Spanish Socialist Workers Party (PSOE) its acronym in Spanish, believes that this time the law will be a fact.

Yesterday, the lower Chamber of Congress debated the legislative proposal of the Socialists.

The law would open the way for Spain to become the fourth country in the European Union; after Belgium, Luxembourg and Holland, in allowing euthanasia. It is the procedure in which a doctor helps a patient to end his life.

Besides those countries, in Switzerland and some states of the United States, assisted suicide is also legal. Patients apply to themselves a lethal drug with medical supervision.

 The chamber analyzed the proposal with a majority of votes. The idea is to send this project to a parliamentary health commission and then to the Senate. All this before returning to the lower house for a final vote. There is no specific calendar for those stages.

The head leader of the nation, the socialist Pedro Sánchez, urged politicians to move quickly.

«Let us recognize the right to a dignified death»

We know that there are many people waiting, that there is no time to lose. Spain must take this step. Let’s recognize the right to a dignified death, ”Sánchez wrote on his Twitter account.

Currently, both euthanasia and assisted suicide are illegal in Spain. Those actions can result in a person with a prison sentence of up to eight years.

Left-wing parties have tried ten times since 1997 to pass bills to help facilitate assisted death. However, the issue has encountered resistance from conservative politicians and the Catholic Church.

Opinions found

The PP and Vox accuse the other parties of wanting to approve the rule to “save” on pensions and medical treatments. The Government expects the law’s approval in June. At the moment it has over 201 votes in favor.

For Vox, this initiative is “the recognition of the right to kill.” “They turn the State into a killing machine,” one of its spokesmen proclaimed. He did not hesitate to compare this proposal with “the final solution” practiced in Hitler’s Germany. They also influenced the economic approach: «Chronic patients must be eliminated because they are very expensive».

The socialist spokeswoman, María Luisa Carcedo, a doctor and former Minister of Health, defended the proposal stating that “human pain has no ideology” and betting on the “right” to decide the interruption of one’s life “in case of suffering from incurable disease, not of immediate death, but one proved unbearable for the human condition ».

Who could “ask for help” to die?

This law states that any person of legal age with Spanish nationality or legal residence in Spain and in full capacity to act and decide may request and receive help to die.

The request must be done in an “autonomous, conscious and informed” way. It has to be in the cases of “serious and incurable disease or serious, chronic and disabling disease causing an intolerable physical or psychological suffering.”

The patient has to do the request in a written form and has to sign it and a doctor has to be present at that moment. In addition, the patient has to ratify it within 15 days. Finally, a control and evaluation commission will verify all requirements. The document can be revoked at any time.

The text contemplates two modalities of euthanasia: the administration to the patient of a lethal substance by the medical professional or the prescription for the patient to the procedure himself. In both cases, the doctor will accompany and support the patient until death occurs.

Leave your comments