Saturday, 7 March 2015

Death by Prescription. Pt 5.

Death by prescription.

          Finally and long overdue the Canadian Medical Association has spoken.  I suspect it was urged to do so by a significant portion of its membership.  This is what it said: MDs can't be forced to assist deaths.  They went on to say that no physician in the country should be forced to play a role in any aspect of assisted dying against their moral or religious beliefs, including referring patients to another doctor willing to help them die.  Perhaps they realize that what has kept medicine an honorable profession has mainly been the ethics, morals and philosophical principles, religious or otherwise of most physicians.  The dictates of the administridiots played no role in the crafting of the Hippocratic oath.
          The Ontario College of Physicians and Surgeons (the licensing and disciplinary body) seem to be taking a different position.  It would appear that they intend to make it mandatory to participate or at least refer to someone who does.  The College, unfortunately regards itself  as the ultimate arbiter of all ethical issues and indeed is in  that they can withdraw the  license to practice medicine.   However, it has a responsibility to physicians as well as patients and sometimes exceeds reasonable boundaries.  Physicians are wary to protest for fear of some sort of future consequences.  The College rulings on this current issue requires careful scrutiny, evaluation and discussion before implementation.  They also need to be reviewed in the light of the decisions of licensing bodies in the other Canadian Provinces.

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