Study: "Tired of living" and dementia are common reasons for euthanasia at Dutch euthanasia clinic

By Alex Schadenberg, International Chair, Euthanasia Prevention Coalition

Alex Schadenberg

Alex Schadenberg

A study released in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) analyzing the euthanasia deaths in the first year of operation at the Netherlands euthanasia clinic appears to have been done to prove that euthanasia is being done carefully at the clinic. 

The study: A study of the First Year of the End-of-Life Clinic for Physician-Assisted Dying in the Netherlands was published online on August 10, 2015.

The data shows that in its first year of operation (March 1, 2012 - March 1, 2013) the Netherlands euthanasia clinic received 645 requests for assisted death and lethally injected 162 people. 

Of the 162 who died by an assisted death, the data indicates that 6 assisted deaths were done for psychological reasons, 21 assisted deaths were done for cognitive decline, such as dementia and 11 assisted deaths were done based on "tired of living." Tired of living means that the person does not have any specific illness.

The study indicates that woman represented 62% (Table 1) of the requests for euthanasia and 65% (Table 3) of the euthanasia deaths.

This study represented the first year of operation for the euthanasia clinic. A recent news report indicated that the number of euthanasia deaths for psychiatric patients has increased substantially.

Link to the full article