Voluntary active euthanasia for adults at their explicit request has been legal in Belgium and the Netherlands since 2002. In those countries, acceptance of the practice for adults has been followed by acceptance of the practice for children. Opponents of euthanasia see this as a dangerous slippery slope. Proponents argue that euthanasia is sometimes ethically appropriate for minors and that, with proper safeguards, it should be legally available in appropriate circumstances for patients at any age. In this Ethics Rounds, we asked philosophers from the United States and the Netherlands, and a Dutch pediatrician, to discuss the ethics of legalizing euthanasia for children.
Should Pediatric Euthanasia be Legalized?
POTENTIAL CONFLICT OF INTEREST: The authors have indicated they have no potential conflicts of interest to disclose.
FINANCIAL DISCLOSURE: The authors have indicated they have no financial relationships relevant to this article to disclose.
Marije Brouwer, Christopher Kaczor, Margaret P. Battin, Els Maeckelberghe, John D. Lantos, Eduard Verhagen; Should Pediatric Euthanasia be Legalized?. Pediatrics February 2018; 141 (2): e20171343. 10.1542/peds.2017-1343
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