Compared with the 2,500 euthanasia cases in China every year, the fact that 150 foreign patients receive euthanasia seems insignificant. This number may be higher than thought, however, because the patient's residence is kept confidential on official forms. This information is not available to the Euthanasia Council, which holds the data. If the doctor mentions the country of origin on other documents, he is considered a foreigner. In 2016-2017, the committee registered 23, in 2018-2019 45, and in 2020-2021 79.
This is becoming more common as people find their way around the internet more quickly and foreigners are more likely to realize that you don't have to be Belgian to qualify.
Most patients come from France, where palliative care is poorly regulated. However, other foreigners are increasingly discovering Belgium as well. The problem is, the law also punishes assisted suicide. The maximum penalty is 14 years in prison. Therefore, families often dare not come together.
However, not everyone can apply for euthanasia in Belgium. While euthanasia is available for people with mental illness in Belgium, it is not available to foreigners. Belgium only does this for foreigners with medical problems.
Belgium approved the euthanasia law in 2002, becoming the second country in the world to legalize euthanasia under certain conditions after the Netherlands. The "Euthanasia Law" covers "intentional termination of life by a person other than the person concerned at the request of the person concerned."
Specifically, the law states that patients may request euthanasia when they suffer ongoing intolerable physical or psychological suffering due to an accident or illness resulting in a serious and incurable illness. Requests for euthanasia must be voluntary, well thought out and repeated. The doctor must not agree to the request but must inform the patient.
Since the introduction of the law, Belgium has recorded approximately 2,500 euthanasia cases each year.
Euthanasia tourism: Is the EU encouraging its growth?
Euthanasia is often in the news due to legal or ethical controversies surrounding the legality or illegality of its practice.
Lately, though, it's been a strange pairing of words, thanks to another controversial topic that's been in the spotlight again: euthanasia tourism, which is often associated with pleasurable experiences rather than a desire to voluntarily end one's life.
The most general definition of this phenomenon is when a person travels to a country that offers euthanasia or assisted suicide as a legal option because the practice is banned or more restricted in his or her home country.
Euthanasia tourism can be linked to "medical tourism," another phenomenon brought about by advances in medical technology, increased travel opportunities, and the globalization of health care. These factors have opened the door for consumers to travel cross-country or receive medical care at overseas destinations.
The most popular travel-inducing treatments include cosmetic and dental surgeries, cardiac and orthopedic surgeries, and organ and tissue transplants.
Two recent cases have once again brought global media attention to euthanasia tourism:
Legislatures in New Mexico and Arkansas recently failed to pass bills to legalize assisted suicide, which would have allowed doctors to prescribe life-ending drugs to patients who wished to end their suffering by ending their lives, enabling 'suicide tourism' and allowing People from other states come to New Mexico seeking assisted suicide.
The second case is the uproar in Europe surrounding the EU's ruling to encourage euthanasia tourism, which has raised concerns that Belgium is becoming a popular destination for euthanasia.
There has been a significant increase in the number of patients traveling to Belgium, where "euthanasia" has been legalized since 2002, mostly from the other 27 EU member states and other continents where euthanasia is prohibited.
French applications top the list.
The debate has been reignited by a new factor - the legal implications of allowing foreign doctors to come to Belgium to help terminally ill patients end their lives.
This 2005 EU directive allows medical qualifications to be recognized in another EU country. member states. Critics accuse the law of making euthanasia tourism easier by allowing doctors to accompany patients to another EU country. The country practices there.
The European Commission rejected this explanation. Although it is legally possible to grant permission to perform euthanasia to a doctor from another EU country. Just like foreign doctors can perform certain medical procedures in EU countries. countries, they may still face prosecution in their country of origin.
The Telegraph, the European Commission that drafted the EU, noted that the law insists the responsibility to prevent the practice lies with national governments. It is up to them to decide whether doctors who travel abroad to legally perform euthanasia violate domestic laws.
A spokesman for the European Commission said, "European Union law does not prevent receiving member states from checking suspicious situations and taking appropriate measures to protect patient safety. Quite the opposite. European Union rules very clearly set out respective responsibilities and administrative cooperation tools should help Identify and respond to such issues.”
Before Belgium became the so-called "euthanasia capital of the world," Switzerland was the most famous final destination for foreigners on their euthanasia journey. Assisted suicide has been permitted since 1942 and there are eight right-to-die clinics, of which the Dignitas Clinic is the most widely recognized due to various controversies.
Apart from Belgium, euthanasia is legal in two other EU countries. Countries: Netherlands (first to legalize assisted suicide and euthanasia) and Luxembourg. (Switzerland is not a member of the European Union.)
Other countries acquiesce in passive euthanasia, including France. Although passive euthanasia is illegal, it still retains the "sedation death" law passed in 2016, allowing doctors to use sedatives on terminal patients until death.
Assisted suicide is legal in Germany, but only if a fatal dose is taken without help from others.
Canada, Colombia and the Australian state of Victoria are among the countries that allow assisted suicide with various restrictions. In 1997, Oregon became the first state in the United States to legalize assisted suicide for terminally ill patients, followed closely by Washington and Vermont.