Last month a Canadian man with ALS made shocking headlines when he opted to take his own life under the country’s assisted suicide and euthanasia laws after the government chose not to provide him with 24-hour home healthcare services due to cost.
Catholic News Agency writes,
Sean Tagert, 41, was diagnosed with ALS, also known as Lou Gherig’s disease, in March of 2013. In October 2017, he suffered cardiac arrest, and was subsequently placed on a ventilator. His illness robbed him of the ability to move his body, eat, or speak, and he communicated via an eye-gaze computer. His mental acuity was unaffected.
At that time, Tagert’s doctors recommended 24-hour in-home care, which is typical for a person who uses a ventilator full time. Vancouver Coastal Health, Tagert’s regional health authority, only initially offered 15.5 hours of care a day. Eventually, after much effort, they increased their offer to 20 hours a day–which still meant that Tagert had to pay $263.50 each day for the remaining four hours of required care.
To put it bluntly, Tagert chose physician-assisted suicide for financial reasons.
Physician-assisted suicide preys on the poor.
People who who cannot afford medical treatment may feel like assisted suicide is their only choice.
This problem isn’t limited to countries with socialized medicine like Canada.
In parts of the U.S. where physician-assisted suicide is legal, insurance companies have refused to pay for patients’ medical care, but have offered to cover assisted-suicide drugs.
As John Stonestreet at the Colson Center for Christian Worldview writes,
What happened in British Columbia can happen in Belgium, and in Oregon, and in New Zealand, and in Colorado, and anywhere physician-assisted suicide is legal.
Being pro-life means believing human life is sacred from conception until natural death, and it means opposing the taking of human life without just cause.
Just like abortion, euthanasia and assisted-suicide are murder, and they violate the sanctity of human life.