Alex Schadenberg Executive Director - Euthanasia Prevention Coalition
An article by Sharon Kirkey published in the National Post indicates that as of February 17 there were 137 Ontario doctors who were willing to be on a list of doctors who will do euthanasia, but there were also 24 doctors who asked to be removed from the list and another 30 doctors who have asked to be temporarily off the list.
Euthanasia was officially legalized on June 17, 2016 in Canada. Therefore, within 8 months, 24 Ontario doctors who agreed to lethally inject patients have changed their mind while another 30 doctors are now unsure about participating in euthanasia.
Jeff Blackmer, the Canadian Medical Association's VP of medical professionalism stated that for some doctors, the act is simply too distressing:
"... we're seeing doctors who go through one experience and it's just overwhelming, it's too difficult, and those are the ones who say, 'take my name off the list. I can't do any more.' "
Meanwhile, the Ontario College of Physicians and Surgeons have ordered physicians who not willing to do euthanasia that they are required to do an "effective referral" to a doctor who will kill their patient.
Doctors who are unwilling to kill their patients are also unwilling to refer their patient to the executioner.
The Coalition for HealthCare and Conscience is challenging the College of Physicians and Surgeons to protect conscience rights for all medical professionals.
I believe that it is natural that doctors are uncomfortable with killing their patients. Killing another human being is counter-intuitive to our human nature.
It is incumbent upon our culture to reject killing and commit ourselves to caring for people.
Death with dignity is not attained by a lethal injection, death with dignity is attained by dying comfortably within a community of caring and supportive people.