The Green Party has released their ‘Medically-Assisted Dying policy’, aka their proposals on euthanasia.
They gave a brief description via @:
We are releasing our Medically-Assisted Dying policy. Stories like those of Lecretia Seales, who stepped into the public eye to ask the courts to give her the right to choose, have recently brought this issue to the fore.
Adults with a terminal illness should have the right to choose a medically assisted death in a supported and open way.
The Green Party does not support extending assisted dying to people who aren’t terminally ill because we can’t be confident that this won’t further marginalise the lives of people with disabilities.
Parliament is currently running a committee inquiry into euthanasia and recently heard public submission. However this far from guarantees Parliament will debate legislation on euthanasia.
ACT MP David Seymour has an assisted dying bill in the Members’ ballot but it wasn’t the 1 out of 79 bills drawn yesterday. It will always be a long shot.
The Green Party policy in full:
Medically-Assisted Dying policy
The Green Party supports the current legal right of an individual to refuse medical treatment (under the Bill of Rights Act 1990) and the right of doctors to refuse to perform futile medical procedures. Furthermore, we believe that an individual aged 18 years or older who has been diagnosed with a terminal illness should have the right to choose to end their life in a supported and open way.
1. The Green Party will support a law change that allows an individual access to medically-assisted dying, provided that, as a minimum, the following safeguards are included:
a) An assessment of the individual by their treating doctor, and a review of this assessment by an independent registered medical practitioner, to determine that the patient
i. Is terminally ill; and
ii. Is experiencing enduring physical or psychological suffering that is intolerable to them and that cannot be relieved under conditions that they consider acceptable; and
iii. Has made durable and persistent requests for assistance in dying.
b) A further assessment by a suitably qualified and registered health practitioner to confirm that the individual:
i) has decision-making capability; and
ii) is making an informed decision free from undue influence;
c) Treating doctors and medical practitioners who elect not to participate in this process must refer the individual to a practitioner who is willing to participate;
d) Ongoing support from appropriately qualified professionals is provided in all cases;
e) A reflective period is always provided before medically-assisted dying occurs; unless two registered medical practitioners agree the individual’s suffering is so great as to render such a period inhumane;
f) For individuals who are declined medically-assisted dying, an appeal process to enable a reassessment of their eligibility;
g) The medically-assisted dying administered under medical supervision or directly by a registered medical practitioner;
h) The mandatory reporting of all consequent deaths to the coroner, as an independent safeguard and to allow monitoring of the assisted dying process.
In addition to these safeguards, the Green Party will:
2. Require oversight of the medically-assisted dying legislation by an appropriate statutory body to ensure compliance with legal requirements.
3. Ensure that prior to the medically-assisted dying legislation coming into force, professional guidelines, training and support are made available to medical practitioners on an ongoing basis.
4. Require annual reviews of the performance of the medically-assisted dying legislation with the findings made available to the public.
5. Not support the extension of medically-assisted dying to individuals who are not terminally ill until New Zealand has in place policies and practices that ensure full social inclusion, including equitable access to health services, for disabled people (see our Disability Policy).