LAUSANNE, Switzerland, January 4, 2006 ( – Lausanne University hospital, Switzerland has decided to permit assisted suicides starting from January 1, 2006. Assisted suicide has always been considered a form of active euthanasia. In addition to Lausanne, other leading Swiss hospitals are now actively discussing permitting the procedure. Though Swiss law initially did not allow doctors to kill their patients the practice of euthanasia has been gradually extended from private groups into the public health systems.

According to Doctors for Life (DFL), extensive experience with euthanasia laws in other countries has revealed a consistent pattern. Assisted suicide is presented to the public as a last resort necessary to alleviate human suffering. Once this becomes acceptable to the public, says DFL,Âthe categories of people deemed expendable steadily expands to include those perceived to have a diminished value to society or to themselves.

In the Netherlands, doctors have been allowed to practice active euthanasia since 1973. While Dutch death regulations initially required that euthanasia be strictly limited to the sickest patients, it has been steadily redefined with the protective guidelines gradually eroded. As a result, Dutch doctors now legally kill the terminally ill, the chronically ill, disabled people and depressed people, on demand, Doctors for Life reports. Furthermore, repeated studies sponsored by the Dutch government show that a significant number of patients are killed by their doctors every year as a result of involuntary euthanasia.

Consequently, says DFL, “eugenic infanticide has now become common in the Netherlands (even though babies cannot ask to be killed).” According to a 1997 study published in the British medical journal The Lancet, approximately 8 percent of all Dutch infant deaths result from lethal injections. An alarming 45 percent of neonatologists and 31 percent of pediatricians who responded to Lancet surveys had killed babies. “A more severe slide down this slippery slope has been well documented in Belgium with euthanasia advocates actively fighting to not only expand the categories of killable people but to also force health care workers with moral objections to participate in assisted suicides against their consciences.”