1,029 patients killed by euthanasia in Ontario since legalization: coroner’s report
OTTAWA, February 16, 2018 (LifeSiteNews) — A shocking 1,029 people were euthanized in Ontario in the first 18 months after Canada legalized the practice, according to the provincial coroner’s report.
The data was uncovered by Patricia Maloney and published on her blog Run With Life.
Maloney was told by Ontario’s Ministry of Health there is no doctor’s “billing code” for euthanasia or assisted suicide in the provincial health insurance plan’s schedule of benefits, and that the provincial coroner’s office was “tracking the cases.”
The data she received from the Office of the Chief Coroner/Ontario Forensic Pathology Service documents that 1,030 people received “MAiD,” or medical assistance in dying up to December 31, 2017. Justin Trudeau’s Liberal government legalized euthanasia in June 2016.
One death was “patient administered” while 1,029 were “clinician administered.”
But Alex Schadenberg, executive director of the Euthanasia Prevention Coalition, warns that the numbers could be higher.
“The data in the Ontario assisted death report is based on the reported deaths. Ontario has instituted a self-reporting system, whereby the doctor who carries out the death is also the doctor who sends in the report. There is no third party oversight of the death,” he told LifeSiteNews in an email.
“Therefore the report will not indicate if the doctor injected a patient under questionable circumstances, because doctors will not self-report abuse of the law and if the doctor didn't submit the report to the coroner, that data will simply remain unknown,” Schadenberg said.
Schadenberg was also concerned the Ontario coroner report listed “other” as the “underlying condition” for euthanasia in eight percent of the deaths.
“In Oregon ‘other causes’ includes diabetes and other chronic conditions,” Schadenberg said, referencing his blog post on this.
The report listed cancer-related as the underlying condition in 64 percent of the deaths, neurodegenerative in 14 percent, and circulatory-respiratory in 14 percent of the deaths.
“The other concern is the pressure that is being placed on healthcare workers to participate in killing their patients,” Schadenberg noted.
An Ontario court recently upheld a College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario policy requiring “doctors who oppose euthanasia to ‘effectively refer’ their patients to a doctor who will kill,” he pointed out.
A group of Christian doctors and associations had challenged the policy as violating their Charter rights.
The chief coroner report documented that 52 percent of the euthanasia killings took place in hospitals, 40 percent at home, five percent in long-term care or nursing homes, and three percent in retirement homes or seniors residences.
The report states 253 doctors and 10 nurse practitioners were “unique” providers of euthanasia deaths.
There was a “pre-existing relationship” between the person killed and individual doing the killing in 18 percent of the deaths, it found.
In eight percent of the cases, “a problem accessing MAiD” was identified.
The average age of the people killed by euthanasia was 74, with the youngest age 22, and the oldest age 101, the report documented.
It stated that 517 women and 513 men were killed.
“Imminent loss of capacity” was listed as the the rationale in 12 percent of the cases, “imminent death” in three percent, with “both” listed as the rationale in seven percent of the deaths.
Read the full report here.
An interim report issued by Health Canada in October 2017 reported that between December 10, 2015 — when Quebec’s provincial law allowing euthanasia came into effect — and June 30, 2017, the number of Canadians killed by euthanasia or assisted suicide was 2,149.