Euthanasia and assisted suicide are attracting increasing public interest. The experiences in the Netherlands and Oregon are explored as well as the topics of terminal sedation and voluntary dehydration. The reasons for requests for euthanasia are broadening beyond medical issues. Reasons for and against are presented. Recommendations are made to improve care of the dying and the frail elderly to decrease the perceived need for euthanasia. If changes are made to legalize euthanasia and/or assisted suicide in Canada, there will be a need to protect conscientious objectors.
Key words: euthanasia, physician-assisted suicide, terminal sedation, end-of-life care, conscientious objectors.
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