JCB Task Force Outlines Key Considerations for Addressing Interim Requests for Physician-Assisted Dying in Canada

A year ago, on February 6, 2015, the Supreme Court of Canada (SCC) delivered a landmark decision in Carter et al. v. Attorney General (Canada), invalidating sections of the Criminal Code that prohibited physician-assisted dying (PAD) for patients meeting specific eligibility requirements. The SCC invalidation was initially suspended for 12 months and has been extended by four months to June 6, 2016 to give legislators time to respond.

 

During this extended period which comes into effect on Saturday, February 6, 2016 individuals can apply to receive an exemption from the suspension. The University of Toronto Joint Centre for Bioethics (JCB) Physician-Assisted Death Implementation Task Force has created a checklist of key considerations for this interim period, before the regulatory framework is established. The considerations outlined in the "Key Considerations for Addressing Interim Requests for a PAD Exemption" are offered to assist health practitioners and organizations in Ontario that may receive inquiries and requests for PAD. These considerations are offered as preliminary to anticipated PAD legislative changes taking full effect on June 6, 2016.

 

Read the key considerations here. pdf link