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Pushing the Boundaries of Lawful Assisted Dying in the Netherlands? Existential Suffering and Lay Assistance

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Two matters that have a significant presence in the contemporary Dutch assisted dying debate, are the nature of the suffering required for an assisted death to be lawful, and the issue of who can lawfully assist. This article explores whether the lawful medical assisted dying model is too restrictive in failing to recognise existential suffering, considering selected case studies involving such suffering and lay assisted death. It addresses the question whether the Netherlands would take a trip down a slippery slope if the lawful model of assisted death were extended to cases where individuals are ‘tired of life’.

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