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Vol 23 No 6 June/July 2018

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Voluntary Euthanasia and the Common Law

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Margaret F.A. OtlowskiAssociate Professor, Faculty of Commerce and Law, University of Tasmania, Australia

ISBN13: 9780198259961
ISBN: 0198259964
Published: May 1997
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Country of Publication: UK
Format: Hardback
Price: Out of print
Paperback edition , ISBN13 9780198298687

Margaret Otlowski tackles the complex and controversial issue of active voluntary euthanasia and argues convincingly for a reform of the criminal law prohibition in common law jurisdictions. Otlowski critically examines the strict legal situation on euthanasia, which treats medically assisted dying as murder, and contrasts it with the position in practice. By highlighting the leniency shown to the few doctors who have actually been prosecuted for assisting their patients to die, she points to the discrepancy between the law and medical practice and argues for reform. The many arguments raised in the euthanasia debate are considered, as are steps taken towards reform in the UK, USA, Canada, and the Netherlands (where active euthanasia in now openly practised).

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Introduction; Preface; Euthanasia Under the Criminal Law; Suicide and Assisted Suicide; The Position in practice: Doctors' Practices and the Law Applied; The Euthanasia Debate; The Changing Climate For Reform; Moves Towards Reform; The Netherlands; Options for Reform; Appendix: Rights of the Terminally Ill Act 1996; Bibliography; Index