Thursday, December 1, 2011
Argentina: Toward "Dignified Death"?
Argentina's Lower House has passed, by a wide margin, a "dignified death" bill. The bill, which is still to be debated in the Senate, would permit patients with irreversible conditions or terminal illness to make informed refusal of lifesaving or life-sustaining medical interventions, including nutrition and hydration. Incompetent patients' wishes could be expressed by a defined set of eligible proxy decision makers (family members and partners). The bill would also relieve medical professionals of liability for following patients' wishes.