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ORAC
14th May 2013, 05:45
The Groningen Protocol (http://www.nationalreview.com/corner/348193/gosnell-did-what-many-bioethicists-advocate)

.............The infanticide of terminally ill and seriously disabled babies occurs regularly in Netherlands as an offshoot of that country’s legalized euthanasia policy. According to two studies published in The Lancet, 8 percent of all babies who die in the Netherlands are euthanized by doctors. And, while infanticide remains technically murder under Dutch law, euthanizing babies has become so societally respectable that a doctor openly published a bureaucratic check list for use by pediatric wards in determining which babies can be killed ethically. Known as the Groningen Protocol, the document was also published with all due respect in the New England Journal of Medicine.........

probes
14th May 2013, 06:10
Which leads us into the very controversial world where one has to ask: "Is it up to doctors to decide who will live?" - which they also do when the premature babies are saved.

rennaps
14th May 2013, 06:43
Godwin's law here we come

racedo
14th May 2013, 18:49
You make the unthinkable acceptable by claiming you have guidelines in place and this little step is only to help and assist.
As years move on people become used to this and they push more and more until utimately you find the unthinkable has long past being accepted and you have moved onto another base of depravity.

vulcanised
14th May 2013, 19:49
It's been going on for some time.

At the hospital where I worked, any 'monsters' that were born never saw the light of day. IMO a compassionate action.

vee-tail-1
14th May 2013, 20:43
This protocol seems quite reasonable when used in one of the most densely populated countries on the planet. Each aborted baby is one less consumer of ever more scarce non-renewable resources. One less polluter of the ever more fragile environment. One less potential parent able to hugely multiply the first two effects. Abortion might be controversial for humans but is good for the planet.

Checkboard
14th May 2013, 21:16
I had a great Aunt once - forced to dedicate her entire life to looking after a (fastest way to say it) "vegetable". One normal life ruined, for one who probably never knew the difference.

racedo
14th May 2013, 21:28
I had a great Aunt once - forced to dedicate her entire life to looking after a (fastest way to say it) "vegetable". One normal life ruined, for one who probably never knew the difference.

Did she say this or are is that your opinion...............

pineridge
15th May 2013, 18:54
Checkboard.......

Could it be that your great aunt found fullfilment in dedicating her life to a "vegetable" as you put it?

probes
15th May 2013, 19:13
pineridge - if you were in such a condition, would you be happy with someone being dedicated to you?

rgbrock1
15th May 2013, 19:23
Wow. We've gone from deciding who lives and dies via jury trial, to deciding at what time a fetus may be aborted, to deciding at what point of time the plug might be pulled on someone who is terminally ill, to assisting those who willingly wish to kill themselves, to deciding when a "vegetable" is deserving of care, or not, and then onward to when a "seriously disabled" baby might be killed. And we express outrage at the actions of Adolf Hitler & Co.?

Must be awful nice to play god. Or judge, jury and executioner all in one.

probes
15th May 2013, 19:34
Must be awful nice to play god. Or judge, jury and executioner all in one.
not really. That's why one needs to fill in the card of no-CPR, if they feel so.

midnight retired
15th May 2013, 20:35
Not only babies , the Dutch now have mobile euthanasia units for the elderlyhttp://worldnews.nbcnews.com/_news/2012/03/01/10556325-netherlands-dispatches-mobile-euthanasia-units?lite

racedo
15th May 2013, 21:02
Human life for some has become a commodity where they can decide who lives and dies and the law allows them as it calls them "progressive".

CityofFlight
15th May 2013, 21:34
That's a bit simplified, Racedo. It's not the simple and I suspect you're already aware.

The factors of socio-economics, philosophical and religious, are the obvious factors into the decisions made by countries, states, tribes, villages.

I offer no right or wrong, recognizing that I do not walk in anyone's shoes, to impose my beliefs on a society, except that with which I belong to.

We have a doctor in Philadelphia, who did horrible things while practicing late term abortions. Rotting in hell comes to mind, for his deeds.

But if a country practices euthanasia and the members of this society support this philosophy, who are we to judge whether that works for their ability to thrive as a nation...as a species?

air pig
15th May 2013, 21:45
This sort of protocol sounds far too like Aktion T4. Remember the lessons of history.

racedo
15th May 2013, 22:09
City

Euthanasia sounds such a wonderful way of killing a person without saying it.

Starts of with ill people and anybody denying people the right to die because of terminal illness etc etc is hard hearted because people claim they have no meaningful life.

Eventually society becomes so immune to it that the rules get stretched but give it 30 years and then maybe society says why should we pay pensions to old people, provide healthcare and housing as it costs money. They have had a life so why shouldn't we euthanise them at 80, then 75 etc etc so we can use it for younger people with their assets.

But lets not Euthanise people who are really wealthy and can pay to stay alive, lets use it on those less wealthy so they are not a burden to society.

But lets put it to the state to decide after all the state doesn't do things wrong and will look after people.

Lonewolf_50
15th May 2013, 22:13
Mr Godwin arrived in post #11. About on schedule.

Matari
16th May 2013, 01:15
This protocol seems quite reasonable when used in one of the most densely populated countries on the planet. Each aborted baby is one less consumer of ever more scarce non-renewable resources. One less polluter of the ever more fragile environment. One less potential parent able to hugely multiply the first two effects. Abortion might be controversial for humans but is good for the planet.

How does this Malthusian nonsense explain, say, Singapore?

hellsbrink
16th May 2013, 04:07
According to two studies published in The Lancet, 8 percent of all babies who die in the Netherlands are euthanized by doctors.

To put that scary number into persepective, well as much perspective as possible as the "article" (i.e. opinion piece with no references so the validity cannot be checked) allows, there were 22 cases of such "infanticide" between 1997 and 2004. Yes, 3 per year. All of whom were severely disabled because of Spina Bifida and/or Hydrocephalus. In every case, 2 doctors from outside the team looking after the child was involved in the decision. In 17 of these cases, specialist Spina Bifida teams were consulted to give a prognosis for the child's future. All PARENTS made the decision to euthanase the children and 4 of the children had parents who specifically ASKED for this to happen.

No matter what some people think, no matter what half-arsed blog posting gets used as "evidence", the bottom line is that these children would have suffered in a short life. You would not treat a dog like that, and the reasons behind these cases of euthanasia are reasons that any civilised country allows the termination of a foetus due to the disabilities concerned.

The guidelines are there to prevent doctors "Playing God", if they do not satisfy 4 criteria then they will not only be prosecuted but will also face jail. Yet some seem to think that is wrong, and many seem to be from the UK where it is deemed acceptable to terminate a pregnancy because the foetus is seen to have a severe disability like Cleft Palate, so there is definitely some hypocrisy involved in "studies" which investigate "infanticide" whilst allowing such terminations over minor cosmetic issues to be acceptable. Yet I don't see anyone whining about things like that, yet are willing to kick one off because Holland decides to have rules which allows the quick ending of suffering and prevention of a lifetime of it. The hypocrisy is astounding.


So why do those who are busy tying their knickers in knots think it's more acceptable to make someone suffer from their disabilities instead of doing the decent thing and giving them relief, like you would do with a dog or horse which had been born with similar issues? Explain why it is more "humane" to make a human suffer whilst making sure a cat doesn't......



PS. In each one of these cases I mentioned, the process to consider and carry out euthanasia took an average of 5 months. Contrary to internet scare stories like the one at the top of this thread, the decision is not taken lightly. The Dutch are serious when it comes to human life, despite the opinions of some here, and I mean "serious" as they recognise the fact that it's sometimes better to end that life when there is or will not be any benefit to the person due to suffering and/or disabilities. Rather than think that you should suffer rather than "live" no matter what, they have the intelligence to recognise that sometimes it is better to put someone out of their misery and end the suffering. That takes more morals than anyone here thinks, and that should be commended and not condemned.

rennaps
16th May 2013, 07:02
Lonewolf

I didn't think it would be that quick :)
I thought we would at least get to post 20 but the outcome was always inevitable

Juud
16th May 2013, 07:08
Hells you are explaining actual facts. Good for you.

Sadly though, facts do little to influence strongly held 'opinions' based on gut feelings and uninformed emotions.

Moral outrage is a comfortable state of being for many people, and facts and information that would drag them out of that comfort zone are not usually welcome. :)

Still and all, for those PPRuNers who are interested in the facts of the matter, here are two very good links:

The Groningen Protocol — Euthanasia in Severely Ill Newborns (http://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMp058026)

Euthansia in the Netherlands (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2733179/)

ORAC
16th May 2013, 07:23
d in a short life. You would not treat a dog like that, and the reasons behind these cases of euthanasia are reasons that any civilised country allows the termination of a foetus due to the disabilities concerned. The Lancet: Paediatric ethics: a repudiation of the Groningen protocol (http://www.thelancet.com/journals/lancet/article/PIIS0140-6736(08)60402-X/fulltext)

obgraham
16th May 2013, 14:21
Unclear to me why this is a sudden issue today -- the article in question was written in 2005, and even the contrary view expressed in the Lancet article is 5 years ago.

That said, I challenge any thinking person to read the original protocol, found in the sidebar of the article referenced above by Juud, and somehow conclude that this is some cruel Nazi-esque plot against all that is moral.

The bioethicist who write the objection quibbled mostly about the choice of verbiage.

We are awfully quick to stand in the shoes of some suffering family and tell them how to behave. I for one support a society that offers them help and support in such an agonizing decision, along with specific and detailed procedures to avoid abuse.

rgbrock1
16th May 2013, 14:41
CoF wrote:

But if a country practices euthanasia and the members of this society support this philosophy, who are we to judge whether that works for their ability to thrive as a nation...as a species?

Well, CoF, Nazi Germany practiced a certain type of euthanasia with support of a whole lot of the German population. Should we not have judged that?

ORAC
16th May 2013, 16:50
Eugenics (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eugenics_in_the_United_States) were a big thing in the 1920-30s, especially in the USA; it was only their enthusiastic adoption my the Germans which led them into disfavour. I fear their return into favour.

hellsbrink
16th May 2013, 17:17
The Lancet: Paediatric ethics: a repudiation of the Groningen protocol

The repeated use of emotional and emotive phrases like "killing babies" and "killing infants", as if it is actual murder and not a medically, morally and philosophically sound practice, from the very start of that article makes it very clear that it is merely the personal view of ONE doctor so is irrelevant as it is clearly not any sort of "study" into the protocol as it is hardly unbiased or subjective. It's no better than the nonsense in the link in the first post of this thread, or the "getting on the outrage bus" by those who have not actually looked to see what said protocol is actually about.

But if we want to go down that road, here's one for you. It doesn't involve a child, or infant. Doesn't even involve a baby, and is something that has been posted before in at least one of the assorted euthanasia threads (which always pop up on a regular basis, as if people think that if you leave a subject alone for a while that people will change their views). It's when I go back to 1997 and my mother had terminal cancer. To cut the story short, one night at the beginning of April we had to call out the doctor because Mum had taken a sudden turn for the worse. The doctor's solution was simple, he fed her some of her barbiturate sleeping pills and turned her morphine pump up to the max. She closed her eyes and soon passed with not a cry but a whimper, oblivious to everything but not screaming in agony.

So, what is the moral standing on that as that doctor deliberately killed my mother, he did "murder" her? Should the police, etc, have been called in over said premeditated and deliberate killing, or were we right for thanking the doctor for ending her suffering so she could die peacefully? Now think of if you had a child who you knew was going to suffer incredibly for it's short life, either in pain because of a major disability or because it's brain has been damaged so badly it will never be anything more than a fleshy lump which cannot communicate, it cannot give you any hint as to the mood it is in, it cannot tell you whether it is in pain, is happy, is upset, nothing. Some people would obviously prefer that child to be in pain but be unable to communicate, be unable to let anyone know it was in pain so some sort of pain relief could be administered. I wouldn't, I couldn't sit there watching and knowing that I had no idea if said child was in agony every time I did so much as stroke it's head. So I would, after getting advice under said protocol, ensure the life was ended with the child having the minimum of suffering.

That's called compassion, not "baby killing". There is a difference.

rgbrock1
16th May 2013, 17:37
hellsbrink:

The case you alluded to as pertained to your Mom would have had the doctor arrested here in the U.S. The doctor in question took a very deliberate and calculated step in ending your Mom's life.

I had a similar situation a few years back when my Mom suffered a cerebral hemorrhage aka, stroke. Although she was alive in the hospital i.e., breathing and with a heart beat her brain activity was basically flat-lined i.e., null. Her doctors stated that due to the loss of oxygen to her brain for a prolonged period of time is was extremely doubtful she would ever exit that state. She was, however, put on life support systems.

After discussing it with my sister we decided that being on life support systems was not something Mom would have wanted: she stated so on numerous occasions BUT NOT IN WRITING.

After an additional day in which her condition was monitored, with no change in brain activity, the doctors turned off the life support systems and she passed on a few hours later.

My point? In your Mom's case the doctors took an active step in ending her life. In my Mom's case the doctors took a passive step in ending her life. I'm certainly not going to pass judgment on either case. But I do know that Jack Kavorkian, a well-known but infamous physician, is still in prison for his actions in "actively" ending patient lives. Even when done so at their own request.

hellsbrink
16th May 2013, 17:50
No, in your case they took an active step as they "pulled the plug" knowing she would die as soon as the life support was removed. They killed her too.

Why is that so different to the euthanasia of a baby who has the same sort of brain activity at birth because of damage caused by factors like hydrocephalus or any other reason like being starved of oxygen?

rgbrock1
16th May 2013, 18:10
That's one way of looking at it, I suppose, hellsbrink. But considering she died a few hours after the plug was pulled, it was evident that she was only alive due to the machines. Thus, without those machines, no life. Is that killing? I prefer to think it is not. But that might be to assuage my own conscience as I still second-guess myself for my decision, 10 years later.

ChocksAwayChaps
16th May 2013, 18:47
In 1958, my grandfather was at home in final stages of terminal cancer and his GP gave him a large shot of morphine with the words, you'll sleep peacefully now. He died in his sleep and with an end to his dreadful suffering. I just hope there'll be a compassionate doctor around should I need it.

obgraham
16th May 2013, 19:36
No RGB, Dr Kevorkian has passed on to the great beyond.

And as I've said before on these boards, although he was a somewhat unpleasant, testy, and generally obnoxious man, there will come a time when he will be hailed as a hero, and a man ahead of his time.

We should stop telling other people how they should best spend their final days.

rgbrock1
16th May 2013, 19:40
Perhaps, obgraham, we should leave it up to the person entering or within his/her last days to decide how to do so, no? Or was that what you were alluding to?

Lonewolf_50
16th May 2013, 21:45
The Lancet are a load of cnuts. I found their "research" into the casualties in Iraq to be abominable, self serving, run rampant with polluted "data" collection.

In short, for all the good they may have ever done, their credibility is more or less nil. They used hearsay as evidence, time and again, and as noted above, are becoming infamous for their use of emotional language, rather than the dry professionalism I'd expect from someone using the scientific method ... which they don't.

hellsbrink: thank you for taking the time to spell it out. Post #20.

Well said, and well done.

Thank you, sir. :ok:

hellsbrink
17th May 2013, 04:08
That's one way of looking at it, I suppose, hellsbrink. But considering she died a few hours after the plug was pulled, it was evident that she was only alive due to the machines. Thus, without those machines, no life. Is that killing? I prefer to think it is not. But that might be to assuage my own conscience as I still second-guess myself for my decision, 10 years later.

Was it "killing"? Yes, same as the doc who euthanased my mother. The way you have to look at it is the "why", as, like my mother, there was no hope and no future. The kindest thing to do was to do what these docs did. It was done out of compassion, out of decency, it was the "right" thing to do.

The same applies to a dog, a cat, a horse, even a baby. And why should we treat an animal with more compassion than a human, for what we are talking about happening in Holland is something done out of compassion, a means to ensure the child does not suffer because of the severity of it's condition, and not the killing of healthy babies because they are female as is what does happen in various countries like China and India.

Only one of these is "killing".

vulcanised
17th May 2013, 11:54
From end of life dilemmas, back to beginning of life dilemmas.

I think animals have it right. If a defective youngster is born they will invariably either kill it, or not feed it. Then simply try again.

rgbrock1
17th May 2013, 12:06
vulcanised wrote:

I think animals have it right. If a defective youngster is born they will invariably either kill it, or not feed it. Then simply try again.

I personally prefer to think that we as humans are a bit beyond the actions of an animal. Not all humans but most.

vulcanised
17th May 2013, 14:25
In your sanctimonious self-satisfaction does it never occur to you that humans have simply got it wrong?

rgbrock1
17th May 2013, 14:30
I don't consider myself being of the self-sanctimonious type. I do consider myself a bit above the animal kingdom as far as values are concerned. Nor do I believe humans got it wrong. We humans have gotten a lot of things wrong but not everything. For the most part, we've done pretty damn good evolving from our cave man forbearers.

cockney steve
17th May 2013, 14:49
@ChocksAwayChaps I had a similar situation inlate 1960's

Doctor saw the body was alive and in pain, absolutely no response to him, so he administered a "jab" and left two bullet-shaped Pessaries, to be kept in the fridge and placed in the rectum if he recovered conciousness. (he didn't)...an excellent GP who had a soft spot for dad and took us on, even though we settled about 4 miles away from his catchment-area.

Saw a baby die in a respirator i was working on (emergency-callout to South wales) Ward -Sister was quite relieved the premature infant had died "it would have had no quality of life and been kept alive artificially for all it's survival time" (again, late 60's)

Last year, partner's 42-year old daughter, terminal cancer.screwed up in a moaning,unresponsive ball District-nurses gave her a jab, laid her out in bed and she died peacefully before they could get out of the door.
Mercy killing?...don't know or care, she suffered a brutal couple of hours before (IMHO) she went out of her mind....
Mother died 5 months later.....miss her.

rgbrock1
17th May 2013, 15:32
cockney steve:

when you wrote: "Mother died 5 months later... miss her" was she the mother of the daughter with terminal cancer aka, your partner?

If so, my sincere condolences to you. That is horrible.

hellsbrink
17th May 2013, 16:36
In 1958, my grandfather was at home in final stages of terminal cancer and his GP gave him a large shot of morphine with the words, you'll sleep peacefully now. He died in his sleep and with an end to his dreadful suffering. I just hope there'll be a compassionate doctor around should I need it.

I have the joys of living in a civilised country where, should such "compassion" be necessary, it is legal for a doctor to end my life at my request provided certain criteria are satisfied.

And that was something else that came up in another thread where we have gone through the same thing as we have now.

Surprise surprise, that was started by ORAC too (http://www.pprune.org/jet-blast/497373-euthanasia-organ-harvesting.html) and contained the same "Eugenics" nonsense as well as links to what are nothing more than ill-informed opinion pieces.

As I said, these threads appear with alarming regularity. I wonder why, especially as ORAC's actual position on matters like the subject of either this thread or the one I have linked to, both of which he started, have not been made clear for anyone to discuss...........

ORAC
19th Jun 2013, 15:45
Belgium and the Netherlands consider permitting euthanasia for children – including to relieve 'suffering for the parents' (http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/timstanley/100222557/belgium-and-the-netherlands-consider-permitting-euthanasia-for-children-including-to-relieve-suffering-for-the-parents/)

.........There’s an even more troubling development in the Netherlands (http://www.nationalrighttolifenews.org/news/2013/06/belgium-and-the-netherlands-escalate-their-childrens-euthanasia-programmes/#.UcGgQ_lQHsY). Since 2005, the Dutch have permitted doctors to euthanise minors so long as they act in accordance with a set of tight medical guidelines – 22 babies with spina bifida have been given lethal injections. But now the Royal Dutch Medical Association (KNMG) is advising that a new test be established for euthanising the newborn: if their suffering distresses the parents. In a recent policy document, the KNMG states that a lethal injection might be appropriate if “the period of gasping and dying persists and the inevitable death is prolonged, in spite of good preparation, and it causes severe suffering for the parents.”

The proposal might sound reasonable to some; after all the infant is their child and is already dying. But it’s surely troubling to establish as the grounds for euthanasia the emotional state of a third party. This is killing justified not by relieving the suffering of the patient but by relieving the suffering of those around them. It is another step down that slippery slope towards making euthanasia far more common and easier to obtain than even many of its supporters would wish it to be.

This is why societies have to take a stand – in law and culture – against euthanasia. Without that stand, without a commitment to always act in defence of life, we open a space within which the potential for abuse is possible and the extension of exceptions to otherwise golden rules is potentially endless. In Belgium and the Netherlands, everything the critics warned about is starting to come true.

Lon More
19th Jun 2013, 17:25
When our daughter was born in the Netherlands she had an APGAR score of 4 after 5 minutes. Much muttering among the doctors and midwives and she was whipped away and put in an incubator. At no time were we asked if we wanted her life terminated. This BTW was 1984 and in a Catholic hospital.
Our answer would have been yes; an answer reinforced by the pressure exerted on us by local clergy to take her home as soon as she came out of IC. It was obvious to us that she would never "get better"

The decision should, and can only, be made by the parents. It is totally unfair of the medical, and more so of religious orders, to exert pressure one way or the other on them.

Furthermore when my ex was being consumed by cancer I am glad that she was able to put an end to the suffering, with the full co-operation of her doctor.

ORAC have you any personal experience of any of this?