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Ireland: only 14% of doctors support euthanasia

A study that examined the attitudes and opinions of physicians in Ireland found that only 14% of physicians surveyed were in favour of introducing euthanasia into Ireland. 

Just 17% were supportive of introducing physician-assisted suicide. A majority continue to oppose the legalisation of euthanasia (67.2%) and physician-assisted suicide (56.3%).

Last September, activists in Ireland introduced the ‘Dying with Dignity Bill‘, which would permit assisted suicide or euthanasia for any Irish citizen over 18 who has been diagnosed with a terminal illness.

The Private Members’ Bill, tabled by Gino Kenny TD of People Before Profit, does not include a time limit for terminal illness, only requiring that the patient be “likely to die as a result of that illness or complications” at an unspecified stage. There is no provision for mandatory psychiatric or psychological evaluation of requests for assisted suicide or euthanasia, where the patient appears to be impaired in their judgement.

The Royal College of Physicians of Ireland (RCPI) has said, “The Bill, as it stands, is very open to significant misuse and abuse and encompasses any person in Ireland who has any chronic condition”.

Those promoting euthanasia and assisted suicide in Ireland are facing the same difficulty as advocates of assisted suicide in the UK where large numbers of doctors, especially those working in palliative care, are opposed to changing the law on assisted suicide and euthanasia. In 2020, the British Medical Association (BMA) surveyed its members asking whether it should change its stance on assisted suicide from ‘opposition’ to ‘neutral’. 70% of doctors working in palliative care stated they were opposed to the BMA changing their stance on assisted suicide.

Study finds that wish to die is transient

A major study on ageing in Ireland found that almost three-quarters of people over 50 who had previously expressed a wish to die no longer had that desire two years later.

The Irish Longitudinal Study on Ageing (TILDA), surveyed 8,174 people over the age of 50 and found that 3.5% expressed a wish to die at Wave 1 of the study. However, as the report states:

“Seventy-two per cent of these participants no longer reported a wish to die when reassessed 2 years later”.

Right To Life UK spokesperson, Catherine Robinson, said: “The overwhelming majority of doctors who are most intimately involved in the end-of-life care of their patients continue to oppose assisted suicide. They know from experience that what vulnerable people need at the end of their lives is love and support, not offers to assist their death. Laws prohibiting assisted suicide and euthanasia exist to protect those who are sick, elderly, depressed or disabled from being pressured into ending their own lives. This pressure might unintentionally come from doctors wanting to free up beds, from family members wanting to get their inheritance, or simply because individuals feel they are a burden on society”.
“Assisted suicide has been legal in Oregon since 1997. Their annual report for 2020 found that 53.1% of patients were concerned with being a ‘burden on family, friends/caregivers’”.

Help stop abortion up to birth for babies with disabilities including Down's syndrome & club foot

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Dear reader

Thanks to the support from people like you, last year a major attempt to hijack the UK Government’s flagship Domestic Abuse Bill with two extreme abortion proposals failed, in a major pro-life victory.

Unfortunately, this is not the end for our opposition.

We are currently facing major threats on five separate fronts:

  1. Pro-abortion MP Rupa Huq has brought forward an amendment to the Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Bill to introduce a jail term of up to two years if a pro-lifer offers support or advice to a woman near an abortion clinic. This is a threat to unborn babies and to freedom of speech.
  2. The assisted suicide lobby has brought forward a bill to legalise assisted suicide, which was introduced to the House of Lords on 26 May.
  3. The Northern Ireland Secretary has given himself new powers to force expanded abortion services on Northern Ireland.
  4. The abortion lobby is further exploiting the COVID-19 crisis to attempt to make dangerous ‘DIY’ home abortions available permanently.
  5. The abortion lobby is expected to make another attempt to change abortion law to allow abortion on demand, for any reason, up to birth.

If these major threats from our opposition are successful, it would be a disaster. Thousands of lives would be lost. 

Fighting both the abortion and assisted suicide lobbies over this period has already made a huge dent in Right To Life UK's limited resources.

To cover this gap and ensure we effectively defeat these proposals during this period, we must raise at least £200,000.

We are, therefore, asking people like you to please give as generously as you can. Every donation, no matter how small, will make a significant difference.

By stopping these threats, YOU can save lives over this coming period.

Will you make a special gift right now to help protect vulnerable lives from these threats?

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