Bioethics News

Netherlands offers euthanasia for alcoholics

Mark   

The ever-expanding circle of eligibility for euthanasia now includes alcoholism. Writing in the Dutch magazine Linda, journalist Marcel Langedijk describes the grim life and death of his brother Mark, a hopeless alcoholic.

After eight years and 21 stints in hospital or rehab, Mark decided that he had enough. He had two children but his marriage had collapsed; his parents cared for him and he had plenty of family support, but he was unable to dry out.  

Finally he asked for euthanasia. Physically he was quite ill and psychologically he was suffering badly.

A woman doctor in a black dress and sneakers arrived to give him his lethal injection. She confirmed his decision and then gave him three doses.

Mr Langedijk is writing a book about his younger brother’s disease and his death through euthanasia which will be published next year. 

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