Re: Standard of Practice: Physician Assisted Death
The Project considers the proposed standard of practice satisfactory with respect to the accommodation of physician freedom of conscience and respect for the moral integrity of physicians. Neither direct nor indirect participation in euthanasia and assisted suicide is required.
The Project offers simple and uncontroversial recommendations to avoid conflicts of conscience associated with failed assisted suicide and euthanasia attempts and urgent situations.
The standard does not adequately address the continuing effects of criminal law. The College has no basis to proceed against physicians who, having the opinion that a patient does not fit one of the criteria specified by Carter, refuse to do anything that would entail complicity in homicide or suicide. College policies and expectations are of no force and effect to the extent that they are inconsistent with criminal prohibitions.
While the standard is satisfactory with respect to freedom of conscience, the fundamental freedoms of physicians in Nova Scotia will remain at risk as long as the College Registrar and others persist in the attitude and intentions demonstrated in his presentation to the Special Joint Committee on Physician Assisted Dying.
IV.1 The Registrar before the Special Joint Committee on Physician Assisted Dying
IV.2 The Registrar, the Conscience Research Group, and “effective referral”
IV.3 The Registrar’s intentions
IV.4 The Registrar’s complaint
IV.5 An ethic of servitude, not service
B1. Attempts to coerce physicians: abortion
B2. Plans to coerce physicians: assisted suicide and euthanasia
B3. Plans to coerce physicians: the CRG Model Policy
B4. CRG convenes meeting with College representatives