LETTER: Euthanasia cartoon falls flat

A doctor’s responsibility is to help his patient to the best of his judgement and ability, says Saanich doctor

The cartoon showed a man with a stethoscope standing at the bedside of a person reaching out, saying, “I know you are in unbearable pain that can no longer be alleviated … But I gotta level with you:  assisting with your suicide would make me feel really uncomfortable.”

A doctor’s responsibility is to help his patient to the best of his judgement and ability.  If a doctor feels that a patient has pain that he can no longer alleviate by drugs, the doctor can ask for help.

In my experience the Palliative Care Team will answer a telephone call within an hour, and they are very good at helping a patient manage pain.

The Criminal Code prohibits physician-assisted death. If Canadians want their doctors to assist with suicide, they need to change the law — get the federal parliament to pass a bill indicating that a doctor can help a person commit suicide, specifying the conditions under which such “help” can be provided.

Dr. Bill Cavers is a Victoria area GP currently serving as the president of Doctors of BC.

In his article “Doctors’ attitudes shifting on physician-assisted suicide,” on page 381 in the October 2014 British Columbia Medical Journal (BCMJ), he reviewed that the General Council of the Canadian Medical Association (CMA) just passed the following motion on end-of-life care by an overwhelming majority: “The CMA supports the right of physicians, within the bounds of existing legislation, to follow their conscience when deciding whether to provide medical aid in dying as defined in the CMA’s policy on euthanasia and assisted suicide.”

Dr. Robert Shepherd

Saanich

 

Just Posted

Saanich won’t be big in Japan; council rejects potential sister-city relationship

Council also refuses to reimburse former mayor Richard Atwell

Teddy bears ready to hit the ice with Victoria Royals

Dec. 15 game brings back annual tradition of donated toys

Two people taken to hospital following crash on West Saanich Road

An SUV left the road and crashed just after 7:30 Wednesday morning

Vancouver Island man runs 500 km for anti-trophy hunting campaign

The 13-day run saw Giordano Corlazzoli run nearly a marathon a day

Travel tips for passing through the Victoria airport this holiday season

It may be small in size but Victoria International Airport was voted one of the top 10 busiest in Canada

Miniature Christmas Land is back in Saanich

Local family continues to open intense Christmas-themed basement to public

POLL: Are you dreaming of a white Christmas?

The rain Vancouver Island is famous for is coming down in buckets,… Continue reading

Humboldt Broncos, cannabis, Fortnite: Here are Canadians’ top Google searches for 2018

When celebrities died or Canada Post went on strike, Canada turned to Google

B.C. billionaires worth 5,845 times average middle-income household

Economists argue for changes to Canadian tax system benefitting rich

Condominium market still ‘a lot better’ than normal in Vancouver suburbs

The Fraser Valley, east of Metro Vancouver, has long been considered a more affordable haven for first-time homebuyers.

Vancouver Island artisan says new fish farm brand too close to his Indigenous name

Marine Harvest prepares to change name to Mowi amid objections from Mowisaht Designs

Retired B.C. teacher a YouTube Sudoku sensation

A retired Kelowna teacher has amassed quite the following online by teaching the art of solving a Sudoku puzzle.

UN chief returns as climate talks teeter closer to collapse

Predictions from international climate expert, warn that global warming is set to do irreversible environmental damage.

Trump’s willingness to intervene in Meng detention roils Canada’s justification

The International Crisis Group said Tuesday, Dec. 11 it’s aware of reports that its North East Asia senior adviser Michael Kovrig has been detained.

Most Read