Canada has released its first nationally accredited training program in medical assistance in dying (MAiD) aimed at licensed physicians and nurse practitioners.
Canada has released its first nationally accredited training program in medical assistance in dying (MAiD) aimed at licensed physicians and nurse practitioners. This follows concerns about the rising prevalence of MAiD in certain regions and its recommendation for “mature minors.”
Opponents of medical assisted suicide have raised concerns, particularly regarding its recommendation for patients who are solely suffering from mental illness and for minors.
Opponents of the expansion of MAiD eligibility have also raised concerns about a report from the House of Commons Special Joint Committee on Medical Assistance in Dying. The report, released in February, included 23 recommendations, one of which suggests providing assisted suicide to “mature minors” who are approaching a foreseeable natural death.
The report noted that the committee had heard “a mix of views” on whether MAiD should be made available to those under 18. It recommended that the government establish a requirement that, “where appropriate, the parents or guardians of a mature minor be consulted in the assessment process for MAiD.” However, it added that “the will of a minor who is found to have the requisite decision-making capacity ultimately takes priority.”
Additionally, the report recommended that within five years, the government undertake consultations with minors on the topic of MAiD and complete research to understand the views and experiences of minors with respect to MAiD, including minors with terminal illnesses, those with disabilities, those in the child welfare system, and indigenous minors.