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SPUC condemns neutral euthanasia decision by BMA

30 June 2005

SPUC condemns "neutral" euthanasia decision by BMA 30 June 2005 The Society for the Protection of Unborn Children (SPUC), a member of the Campaign Against Euthanasia , has condemned the decision to go "neutral" on euthanasia by the British Medical Association (BMA). Anthony Ozimic, SPUC political secretary, commented: "This is very frightening for patients and will do enormous harm to doctor/patient relationships. It is a huge disservice to BMA members - ordinary doctors working hard to serve their patients. "How can the doctors' trade union be neutral on the fundamental ethical question of whether or not doctors should kill their patients? Why has the BMA ignored the Royal College of Nursing's consultation of nurses which received an 'overwhelming response' opposing assisted suicide and 'reaffirm[ing] the core principles which lie at the heart of nursing: valuing life and ensuring patients are well cared for'? The new BMA position abandons doctors' nursing colleagues and may signal a division in the medical services into one group which kills and another which cares", Mr Ozimic continued. "With the doctors' trade union abandoning its opposition both to passive euthanasia (recently endorsed by Parliament in the Mental Capacity Act), and active euthanasia (still illegal, but being proposed by some MPs and Peers), vulnerable people are at risk as never before", concluded Mr Ozimic. Notes for editors: Lord Joffe's assisted suicide Bill (which seeks to legalise active euthanasia) and the Mental Capacity Act are two sides of the same euthanasia coin. The worldwide euthanasia movement has declared that the legalisation of euthanasia by dehydration, as in the Mental Capacity Act, is one of its key goals in its campaign to legalise euthanasia by lethal injection. As long ago as 1984, the past president of the World Federation of Right-to-Die Societies, Helgha Kuhse, said: 'If we can get people to accept the removal of all treatment and care - especially the removal of food and fluids - they will see what a painful way this is to die and then, in the patient's best interests, they will accept the lethal injection'."

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