ibusinesslines.com March 23, 2018

Supreme Court Indicates Recognition Of Living Will For Passive Euthanasia

12 October 2017, 05:01 | Melissa Porter

Government agrees 'in principle' to allow 'passive euthanasia' for patients in a permanently vegetative state as it drafts bill on assisted dying

SC debates on future prospect in deciding quantum of insurance compensation

Active euthanasia is when a step such as administering a drug is taken to end a person's life, while passive euthanasia is when the person is allowed to die by withholding treatment.

Debating the question of law, the Chief Justice then observed that one can not say that you have a right to die (suicide), but you have a right to dignified death.

The present case has sought the enactment of a law along the lines of the Patient Autonomy and Self-determination Act of the U.S., which allow the practice of a living will, according to LiveLaw.

After senior advocates Arvind Datar and Sanjay Hegde placed various facets and aspects linking passive euthanasia to living will, advocate Devansh Mohta placed a draft pro forma of a living will or advance directive by a person specifying the medical conditions when s/he should not be provided further artificial life support assistance.

It also said if a medical board certifies that the health of the patient is irreversible and can not be kept alive without artificial support, then the living will's role may come in. "If we recognise the right to dignity in death, then why not dignity in dying?"

The PIL filed in 2005 said when a medical expert opines that the person afflicted with a terminal disease has reached a point of no return then he should be given the right to refuse being put on life support system as it would only prolong his agony otherwise. The bill recognises the concept of living will but does not make it binding on medical practitioners and says that i can not be executed by any patient since it would be considered void.

In such a case, relatives will be spared the agonising decision of removing life support and doctors will be guided exclusively by the "living will".

The Bench said it would lay down guidelines for drafting living wills and how it can be authenticated.

On the other side of the debate, Prashant Bhushan, appearing for NGO "Common Cause", said that in India, where resources are so limited, living wills should be legally acceptable in order to avoid creating a hopeless situation for the middle-class.

Under U.S. jurisdiction patient autonomy is paramount, and many States have laws allowing advance directives, even the nomination of a "health care proxy" who can decide on behalf of the patient.

Article 21 provides that "no person shall be deprived of his life or personal liberty except according to procedure established by law".

The bench expressed its inclination for constituting medical boards across the country in each district and said it should be obligatory. It was also his submission that the government does not oppose euthanasia and has examined it from various perspectives while expressing his concerns on the final say of living will.

Justice Chandrachud also pointed out that a living will is "not postulated on the right to die but on the right to live, as the person is actually saying he wants to live only till he can without outside support".

The draft Bill on the issue outlines the guidelines and framework under which passive euthanasia, or a scenario where doctors could withdraw treatment to a terminally-ill patient, can be allowed.

Other News

Trending Now

Highly Traded Stock: Freeport-McMoRan Inc. (FCX)
Baird maintained the stock with "Buy" rating in Friday, October 6 report. (NYSE: FCX ) opened at 14.56 on Tuesday. Shares of Freeport-McMoRan Inc (NYSE: FCX ) traded up 3.90% during mid-day trading on Friday, reaching $11.73.

JPMorgan opens earnings season with $1bn fixed income fall
Norges Bank bought a new position in JPMorgan Chase & Co. during the fourth quarter worth approximately $2,897,377,000. Skba Capital Management Llc increased Hp Inc stake by 209,600 shares to 694,300 valued at $12.14 million in 2017Q2.

What Radamel Falcao Really Said To Peru Midfielder Renato Tapia Revealed
New Zealand Football CEO Andy Martin says both sides want to ensure they get as much recovery and preparation time as possible. He's the best player in the world, and perhaps now his Argentine critics will give him his due.

Ghana aim to silence home crowd to ensure victory against India
Goalkeeper Dheeraj Singh calls for even more support against Ghana. "It's Ghana next and it's important to take the game to them". If not for the second spot, Ghana and India be eyeing to finish as one of the best third-placed sides.

PSG Star Claims "It's A Possibility" That Alexis Sanchez Will Join Them
Arsene Wenger says it is "possible" both Alexis Sanchez and Mesut Ozil could leave Arsenal in the January transfer window. Asked if he was anxious about Sanchez's mental state, Wenger said: "I will have to speak to him".

Counter-Strike: Global Offensive Shines Up Dust 2 Map
Valve explained the changes to the map, which include a substantial visual upgrade, on the game's website . Bomb site A is changed to remove drain pipes so players can peek around corners more easily.

Italy's Gucci bans fur, joining others in seeking alternatives
Burberry was targeted by protesters during London Fashion Week over its continuing use of fur in its collections. So we commend Gucci's compassionate decision, and for helping to ensure that the future of fashion is fur-free'.