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In die Skriflig

On-line version ISSN 2305-0853
Print version ISSN 1018-6441


RHEEDER, Adriaan L.. Life to the bitter end: Euthanasia as voluntary choice by persons with dementia, with reference to the practice in the Netherlands - a preliminary theological-ethical evaluation. In Skriflig (Online) [online]. 2012, vol.46, n.1, pp.1-12. ISSN 2305-0853.

Euthanasia on request has been applied since the 1970s in the Netherlands. In 2002, the practice of euthanasia on request was legalised. When there is certainty that 'rules of due care' are satisfied, euthanasia is regarded as legal. Most euthanasia on request is executed on terminal cancer patients. From about 2004 the trend is found that euthanasia on request is performed to patients with early dementia. Several persons also have a living will in which euthanasia is requested if dementia develops. The purpose of this article is to preliminary judge this practice in the light of the reformed ethics. From this study it would appear that the practice of euthanasia to patients with dementia in general are not acceptable. This article argues provisionally that Scripture is not strange to the possibility of an exception under certain circumstances.

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