Belgium’s Lower House lawmakers overnight passed what must have been a most difficult bill – removing age restrictions on euthanasia.
That means euthanasia is now allowed for children who are terminally ill, in unbearable pain and without the option of relief from the pain via treatment.
Parents have to support the decision, which has to be made by a child who is conscious and understands what the outcome of euthanasia is.
Crucially, multiple requests are required before euthanasia is enacted.
Time reports a case relayed to them by Dr. Jutte Van der Werf Ten Bosch, a pediatric oncologist from University Hospital Brussels, who said these cases are rare but do occur.
Prior to this law in such situations “I feel like a total failure in these cases”, he said.
“You promise the child ‘I will take care of you, I will do the best I can,’ and then you can’t do the best you can because all these complications arise and you can’t do anything about it.”
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