Euthanasia for terminally ill children approved by Dutch government

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Euthanasia for terminally ill children approved by Dutch government
CREDIT: Aditya Romansa on Unsplash

PLANS to allow euthanasia for terminally ill children aged under-12 has been approved by the Dutch government. Is this a step too far?

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Netherlands have already made euthanasia legal for children over the age of 12 but this new law would make it available for terminally ill children between the ages of one and 12.

As with children over the age of 12, which needs patient and parental consent, the latter would be needed under the proposed rule change.

According to Health Minister Hugo de Jonge, the patient must also be enduring “unbearable and endless suffering” and at least two doctors must agree to the procedure.


The approved changes by the Dutch government is expected to be implemented in the next few months.

The issue has proven extremely controversial, much like the man who wished to livestream his own death, but Mr de Jonge said studies have shown a need for the rule change.


In a letter to parliament, Mr de Jonge said: “The study shows that there is a need for active termination of life among doctors and parents of incurably ill children, who are suffering hopelessly and unbearably and will die within the foreseeable future.”

The study reported that around five to 10 children a year would be affected by the rule change in a country where it is also legal for babies up to a year old to get euthanised with parental consent.

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