Euthanasia – Brain Ethics Sat, 18 Sep 2021 09:09:07 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Euthanasia – Brain Ethics 32 32 “My mother died by euthanasia. For my family, this day is a positive memory ‘ Sat, 18 Sep 2021 01:30:00 +0000

My parents were both very supportive of euthanasia. They have a strong urge to end your life when you feel it no longer meets your own standards. They made this known in 2014, when they were both in good health and in their sixties, by signing a declaration of euthanasia with their general practitioner. They agreed that euthanasia was an option in cases of intolerable suffering, terminal illness and dementia.

It was in the Netherlands, where euthanasia has been legalized for capable adults and emancipated minors since 2002. It is the same in Belgium, where I grew up, where I met my Irish husband and where are born our children. Each year, less than 5% of deaths in these countries are due to euthanasia, and 85% of them are patients with terminal illness. General practitioners are actively involved.

In 2018 my mother was diagnosed with bowel cancer and received excellent care. The surgery to remove part of the intestine was successful and she started chemotherapy. Six weeks later, she developed pain radiating to her spine that prevented her from sleeping. It took some time to get a final diagnosis. At first, it was thought that this pain was due to the operation and not the cancer. After weeks of uncontrollable pain, however, it became increasingly evident that the cancer had spread throughout her body. In early 2019, he was told that the treatment could only be palliative. It started with morphine patches.

This news was a blow, for her and for my father in particular, but also for my brothers and sisters, whose lives have changed dramatically. My two sisters are registered nurses and lived near my parents. They decided to take care of her. From that point on, my mom became a full-time patient, with my dad and sisters providing round-the-clock care so that she could stay at home. Living in Ireland I have only observed this from afar, with infrequent visits and regular phone calls.

My mother’s health gradually deteriorated. Yet on another level, she had the time of her life. She always liked to be the center of attention. It was something she had wanted since she was sent to boarding school at the age of eight, a traumatic experience. Her cancer, strangely enough, gave her a shameless approach to getting that attention, both from my father and my sisters.

My brother took care of all the practical arrangements. He also showered her with flowers. The house was always full of them – and she loved it. Yes, my mother, battling cancer, certainly got the most of the attention, and she loved every moment of it.

In June, the pain started to take hold of her and the morphine patches could no longer control the pain. She was provided with a morphine pump and the dose was slowly increased each week. Her belly began to show cancer growth. Although other parts of her body lost weight, her stomach swelled.

Throughout her medical journey, her general practitioner was very close and guided her every step of the way. He contacted her weekly in person and whenever necessary by phone. She loved him very much and that helped her to be very young. She liked it. But at the end of July, her conversations with him changed from “What can we do next?” To “it’s getting too serious”.

They talked about passive euthanasia, which would mean increasing her medication, stopping her food and water intake, and inducing a coma so that she died peacefully. Considering the amount of water retention in her tummy, however, it could take weeks, if not longer, and was rejected. Passive euthanasia would lead to secondary ailments, such as bedsores, and the care required – without her being mentally present – would weigh heavily on her whole family. Her condition was bad and my sisters and my father were tired. A decision was made to hire a night nurse, so that everyone could at least get a good night’s sleep.

A few days later, my mother summoned the general practitioner. After talking to her, he called a meeting. My mom wanted to start the conversation about active euthanasia. She was on the maximum dose of morphine, her pain was increasing all the time, and relief was only occasional. She was in real pain. It was decided to initiate the process of active euthanasia.

His declaration was in place with the general practitioner, but to proceed with euthanasia, an independent SCEN doctor (accompaniment and consultation of euthanasia) must meet with the patient to confirm his will. These doctors have been trained in the legal aspects of euthanasia, to support general practitioners and provide independent observation of the patient’s wish to die.

My father called me on a Friday afternoon, a call that I had been waiting for a long time but which caught me off guard at the same time. He told me that they had decided to start the procedure and asked me if I still supported this decision. Even if it is not the family’s decision and they cannot override or change the patient’s wishes, it is important to have their support.

As in many families, we often have different opinions, but in this we all recognized my mother’s wish and supported her. My dad called back on Saturday and told me the SCEN doctor would come on Monday. He was worried because my mother was taking such a high dose of morphine that it was difficult to counteract it with another drug, Haldol, to keep her present. He feared that she might not be able to tell her story coherently, thus stopping the process. You had to trust the process, and the doctor SCEN, who would have seen many patients in his condition. I booked my flight.

Monday has come. I left Galway on the airport bus while the SCEN doctor sat with my mother for over two hours. She left without speaking to the rest of the family. The general practitioner confirmed the next day that the SCEN doctor had approved active euthanasia. My mother asked for a priest. The general practitioner ordered the medicine. The day and time have been set: Wednesday at 1 p.m.

It was decided that only her children and my father would be informed of the timing. We agreed that his grandchildren, his sisters and brothers, all the other families, would not be informed until afterwards. My mom had spent the last few months saying goodbye to everyone, and she had had enough. We needed our energy and attention to sustain her and we are grateful for this decision: no distractions.

The GP returned on Tuesday and had a brief conversation with my mother, once again confirming his wishes. My dad wanted to be alone with her that night and it was decided that we would meet again at 10am the next day. Each of us had a task. My older sister was taking care of the medication. She spoke to the nurses who maintain the morphine pumps, about how to keep my mom present without panicking. She got it right. My younger sister would dress her. I had to wash her and prepare food. My brother got the flowers.

Wednesday morning. My mother was surprisingly calm and happy. My father was trying very hard to stay the course. He made a rule. The room in which my mother’s bed was placed was going to be a “dry room”. What he meant, you’re crying out there; once inside, you are there to support your mother. Fair enough. He also wanted to have coffee and a piece of cake at 11am, after which they would go to my mom’s room and set him up. We then had to join them. The plan was established.

The job is done, 11am came, coffee and cakes were served. Only my mother ate the cake. Her cancer had kept her appetite roaring all along and now was no different. She even completed some of the other installments, commenting on how good it was. We must have laughed.

So my dad stood up and said, “It’s about time. It was an intense moment, fighting against tears; memory still brings them even now. We found ourselves sitting with the leftover cake, a little stunned. Half an hour later, we were called into the “dry room”. By then we were all settled. The atmosphere was positive. We checked with each other, with my dad, and then for the last time, with my mom. Mom, are you sure? She was calm and together, holding my father’s hand. Yes, she was sure of it.

Sometimes situations just throw you away. The GP and his colleague, in the Dutch manner, got on their bikes and locked them. The bike lock hit me with a surreal feeling; it was such an ordinary thing to do in such extraordinary circumstances.

It was a beautiful sunny day. They came in and we were asked to leave the room. The GP was alone with my mom, briefly, I guess to confirm with her again, to be sure. He called us back and started to settle down. My father took a seat on the bed, holding my mother in his arms. My older sister was holding it. My brother and younger sister were on the other side of the bed, holding her hand. I was at his feet. Earlier today, the nurse inserted a port. Everything was ready.

Then the GP broke down. It was his first euthanasia, which is why his colleague was with him to support him. My mom got the nicest response – it’s amazing what these situations bring – and she told him to take her time, that she really enjoyed all of her time with him and that she was ready when he did. was. He apologized, but we all laughed and asked my dad, “So this dry room thing doesn’t apply to him?” My father smiled and shrugged. The GP has regained control of his emotions. We all said a final goodbye and my mom confirmed for the last time. He first gave her something to put her to sleep. Her head fell against my father’s arm and she gave a last loud snore. He then administered the drug to stop his heart. At 1:03 p.m., she was gone; we closed our eyes.

The GP left for a moment and we slowly took in the situation. He returned to confirm his death and then called the police, who had been notified in advance. Euthanasia is still classified as an unnatural death and a coroner must confirm it and ensure all paperwork has been completed as part of the legal process. Once that was done, and after sitting there for a while, still stunned, we informed the rest of the family. The grandchildren started coming, the funeral directors came by, many phone calls were made.

We were lucky, not only because my mom had this option, which she chose, but also because we all supported her in this decision. But, in saying this, neither of us could have stopped the process. It was his decision and his only. Having a united family surely made this experience a shared experience, but without her strength and conviction, it would not have been possible.

My mother was brought up in the Catholic religion and has remained loosely tied to the church. She always watched the Pope at Easter and made sure to hear her Urbi et Orbi, but she didn’t go to church. Many candles lit in churches must have made up for this. She was also a practical woman, who understood that the end of her life would become more and more painful. And finally, she loved the attention and the drama, but realized that she was too tired to enjoy it. For her, euthanasia was an option. This is not the case for everyone, but we are grateful to him for having been able to take advantage of it. For my father, sisters, brother and I, strange as it sounds, it is a positive memory.

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NSW is alone on voluntary euthanasia after landmark bill passed in Queensland Fri, 17 Sep 2021 20:11:03 +0000

New South Wales could have been the first state to legalize voluntary assisted dying (VAD), but is now on its own after Queensland passed its own euthanasia bill this week.

In 2017, NSW had the opportunity to become the first Australian jurisdiction to legislate on distance selling, but the bill did not pass the Upper House by a single vote.

Victoria, days later, became the first to take this historic milestone and on Thursday Queensland became the fifth state to legalize voluntary euthanasia.

Sydney Independent MP Alex Greenwich will bring forward another VAD bill to take over state parliament next month – with support from all political circles.

Mr Greenwich will introduce a bill on assisted dying to Parliament when it is resumed next month.(

AAP: Mick Tsikas


Shayne Higson, vice chair of the Euthanasia advocacy group Dying with Dignity NSW, said she was “thrilled” to see the Sunshine State pass the VAD bill, especially with a majority of 61 in 30.

“These laws are indispensable, they are compassionate, we are very happy that the bill was also passed without being amended,” Ms. Higson said.

Opponents who voted against the legislation in 2017, including Hugh McDermott of NSW Labor and Fred Nile, founder of the Christian Democratic Party (CPD), told the CBA they would fight the bill again.

“I don’t see any change, no real difference between now and then,” McDermott said.

“Putting a situation in the law, where you can appoint to commit suicide, is simply unacceptable, in my opinion.”

Reverend Nile said he was disappointed with Queensland and said he sent a “dangerous statement”.

People with chronic illnesses and others directly affected by the bill will follow the proceedings closely.

Sydney woman Judith Daley has been hospitalized more than 50 times since being diagnosed with chronic inflammatory lung disease (COPD) 20 years ago and lung cancer years later.

The 77-year-old from Alexandria, a suburb of Sydney, and a board member of Dying with Dignity NSW, has had radiation treatment more than 32 times and when doctors offered chemotherapy again, She refused.

“My oncologist said there was a 5 to 10 percent chance that the chemotherapy would work,” Ms. Daley said.

Ms Daley said she did not want to die but knew there might come a day when living was “no longer tolerable”.

“At the moment I don’t want to die. I have had a wonderful life and I still hope that it can improve after the operation I had in August,” she said.

“But… I don’t know when I’m suddenly going to get worse and I want control, to know that I can do something about it.”

A smiling Judith Daley
Ms Daley is hopeful after having surgery, but knows her condition could worsen. (



Voluntary euthanasia in Australia enjoys overwhelming support within the community, according to several surveys.

A Roy Morgan poll commissioned by Dying with Dignity in 2017 found that 87% of Australians supported ‘letting patients die’ if they were ‘desperately ill’ or ‘in incredible pain’.

These numbers were corroborated by a 2019 ABC Vote Compass poll which found overwhelming support for euthanasia, regardless of political or religious affiliation.

West Sydney voters of Blaxland, McMahon and Parramatta were the least in favor of physician-assisted dying, according to Vote Compass data.

Mr. McDermott, whose Prospect electorate also crosses in West Sydney, said his constituents wrote to him regularly to express their opposition to the VAD.

NSW Member for Prospect Hugh McDermott
Hugh McDermott of the Labor Party voted against the bill in 2017.(



“Despite what pro-euthanasia groups are saying, there is significant resistance to these laws,” he said.

Like many in the debate, Mr. McDermott’s position was deeply personal. When his father was diagnosed with cancer, he expressed a desire to be voluntarily euthanized.

“It went on for a few months and during that time he reconciled with a lot of family members, he got his house in order,” McDermott said.

“He fought to the end.

Ms. Higson of Dying with Dignity, however, said this person “deserves the right to a peaceful death”.

“Another advantage is that it would allow these people not to reach such a desperate stage and to be able to have an open and honest conversation with the doctors and their families,” she said.

Dying with Dignity Vice President Shayne Higson
Dying with Dignity Vice-Chair Shayne Higson outside the New South Wales Parliament, calling for support for assisted dying.(



The state parliament has not sat since June due to the Delta outbreak and the bill’s sponsor, Mr Greenwich, used this period to make further amendments.

A revised bill is expected to contain provisions not seen anywhere else in the country, including improved communication and support for residents of elderly care facilities.

The national MP who introduced the bill four years ago, Trevor Khan, has said that passage of the bill would be “inevitable”, if not this round, then certainly the next.

“There is a lot of support between the parties this time around, but the numbers are very difficult to assess with precision,” Khan said.

“I think it will be close.”

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Advocates eye national holdouts after historic Qld euthanasia vote Fri, 17 Sep 2021 09:30:00 +0000

After Victoria, Western Australia, South Australia and Tasmania, the Queensland approach is broader. But the practice, also known as voluntary aid in dying, will always be reserved for adults with advanced and progressive disease causing intolerable suffering.


They will need to have decision-making capacity, receive two assessments by separate physicians, and make three separate requests over a nine-day period.

Supported by extensive work by the state law reform commission, it will extend eligibility to those who are 12 months old, starting from the six month window in other states. Doctors will also be able to raise issues with patients.

While individual health practitioners may have objected under other public schemes, private faith-based institutions are also distinguished in Queensland law: they will also be able to refuse to participate but must not impede access to the public. ‘a person through outpatient health care. workers or a transfer.

Even still, the supporters would like it to go further. Perron believes there should be no need for a prognosis at the time of death, only a diagnosis of terminal illness.

“I don’t think 10 years ago Queensland was ready for these laws,” she said during her contribution to two days of personal and emotional speeches during debate on the bill this week. before a rare vote of conscience of the big party.

Some in the state still weren’t ready, others probably never will.

Deputy LNP opposition leader and shadow attorney general David Janetzki, who did not support the bill, introduced 54 amendments, including allowing faith-based establishments to ban euthanasia on their premises, which failed .

Katter’s Australian party – whose three MPs voted against the bill – have tried to delay debate until funding for palliative care is increased. This motion was rejected by 53 votes to 37.


Given the support of the Prime Minister and many high-ranking members of the government, as well as the successful campaign to decriminalize abortion in 2017, supporters were hopeful but still unsure of what would happen when the vote began. .

That the bill which finally passed through the 93 seats of Parliament intact, with a vast majority (61 votes to 30) and during its first presentation (where other jurisdictions had debates, or unsuccessful attempts, in the past) has been well received by supporters to put it mildly.

Catholic Health Australia, which represents groups providing one in five hospital beds and elderly care in the state, said the bill puts the sites in a “heinous and extraordinary position”.

Pro-life group Cherish Life said MPs supporting the bill had “abdicated their responsibility to protect the most vulnerable.”

Two prominent end-of-life researchers – QUT professors Ben White and Lindy Willmott – whose work has informed euthanasia laws in all other states, said Mr Janetzki’s amendments would have made the law already balanced “Heavy, inconsistent and impractical”.

Despite the long campaign, the end result still produced surprising results for Muir, especially in the Gold Coast region.

More than expected, six of the 10 LNP members who backed the bill hold electorates in the region, in which LNP leader David Crisafulli – who voted against – is also based.

Muir said the region’s “very influential” self-funded retiree base, many of whom are LNP voters, had told him they wanted the laws passed. He also believes the Labor campaign in some other LNP core seats changing hands in the October election could have come down to voters looking for the program.

Outside Queensland, the New South Wales Parliament could see a debate on the issue again as early as next month as part of a bill being prepared by Independent Sydney MP Alex Greenwich.


Despite longstanding opposition to voluntary euthanasia, there are even signs of a shift in elements of the Australian Medical Association branch of the state. But Liberal Prime Minister Gladys Berejiklian and Labor Party leader Chris Minns personally oppose the laws.

While Berejiklian’s preference is to focus on the captivating challenge of the COVID-19 state, Muir said there was precedent for her to “step up” and support reform as part of her legacy. It came from the Liberal Premiers of Tasmania and South Australia who supported non-government bills.

Beyond that, attention also turns to ACT and NT. There, the political will exists but is blocked by a bill introduced by outgoing federal deputy Kevin Andrews to overturn the latter’s first attempt the same year.

Despite the federal government’s lack of appetite for the necessary repeal or the drafting of new legislation, Perron hopes the tide is turning.

“Competitive federalism works, and that is exactly what it is,” he says. “States learn from each other and try to be the best.”

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How to watch teenage euthanasia Thu, 16 Sep 2021 19:45:54 +0000

Teenage Euthanasia is an animated coming-of-age comedy voiced by Maria Bamford, Jo Firestone, Tim Robinson and Bebe Neuwirth. The show is about a teenage mother named Trophy Fantasy, who left her baby girl with her mother, who owns a funeral home in Florida. Years later, Trophy dies and is resurrected as a zombie with supernatural powers when his body is delivered to his mother’s funeral home. The show airs Sundays at midnight (00:00 ET Monday) on the Sunday Night Adult Swim Block.

Where to watch new episodes of teenage euthanasia: New episodes of Teenage euthanasia start Sunday at midnight September 20 on Adult Swim. You can watch new episodes when they stream live on Adult Swim with a subscription to Hulu Live TV (Free try).

I go into more detail and offer more options to watch Teenage euthanasia below.

Where to Watch New Teen Euthanasia Episodes

Below are your options for watching new episodes of Teenage Euthanasia if you don’t have cable.

Hulu Live TV

Hulu logo

Try a 1-week free trial on Hulu Live TV

Hulu Live TV is your best option for new teenage euthanasia episodes. They have Adult Swim in their channel lineup so you can watch new episodes when they air at midnight on Sundays. They will also have on-demand access once the new episode airs. Live TV service is $ 64.99 / month after a One week free trial. A subscription to Hulu Live TV includes the following features:

  • more than 60 channels including Adult Swim
  • 50 hours of cloud DVR storage (expandable)
  • Stream on two streams at the same time, with an upgrade option for unlimited streams.
  • The Hulu on-demand streaming library
  • Hulu is available on Android, iOS, Xbox One, 4th Generation Apple TV, Chromecast, Roku, and Amazon Fire TV and Stick.

If you are curious about all the channels Hulu Live TV offers in your area, including Adult Swim, you can use this tool on the Hulu website: Hulu Live TV Channels By Zip Code. Check out our Hulu Live TV review for more information.

Other ways to watch new episodes

Other services like Adult Swim in their lineup are DIRECTV Stream, Sling TV and YouTube TV.

slingshot tv

You can watch new episodes of Teenage euthanasia on Adult Swim with a subscription to Sling TV Blue or Orange package. However, Sling TV is NOT a valid TV provider to unlock the Adult Swim app. The service offers a wide variety of channel packages starting at $ 35 per month. Sling includes 50 hours of cloud DVR storage and the ability to stream to devices simultaneously. The service supports iOS, Android, Fire TV, Chromecast, Apple TV, Roku, and more. Sling offers promotional prices for new customers. (see notice)

at & t tv

DIRECTV stream offers the Adult Swim channel in its “Entertainment” channel plan for a price of $ 69.99 per month with other plans available. This will give access to new episodes of Teenage euthanasia, and the streaming service is an accepted TV provider to unlock the Adult Swim app. The service supports Apple TV, iOS, Android, Amazon Fire TV, Chromecast, and most modern web browsers. There is no contract when signing up for DIRECTV Stream, and they offer a full refund if you cancel within 14 days. (see notice)

youtube television

YouTube TV is another way to watch new episodes of Teenage euthanasia. They stream Adult Swim and over 85 other channels with three simultaneous streams and a personal cloud DVR. However, YouTube TV is NOT a valid TV provider to unlock content on the Adult Swim app. All of this comes with a price of $ 64.99 per month. YouTube TV supports Android, iOS (including streaming to Apple TV), and Chromecasts / Chromecast compatible TVs. YouTube TV offers a free try. (see notice)

Watch Teen Euthanasia on Adult Swimming App

To stream Adult Swim through the Adult Swim app, you need to enter your TV provider credentials. Most think you need a Cable Provider ID to use the Adult Swim app, but you don’t. Currently, Hulu Live TV and DIRECTV Stream accounts will work to unlock the Adult Swim app..

You can even download the Adult Swim app on your Roku, Apple TV, or Amazon Fire TV and watch it on your TV using your Hulu Live TV or DIRECTV Stream credentials. The following section contains step-by-step instructions on installing and activating the Adult Swim Go app on your streaming device.

How to watch on your device

For our example, let’s say we have a Hulu Live TV subscription and a Roku. We can follow the steps below to make the Adult Swim app work on our device. While the steps below use Hulu Live TV and Roku to watch Adult Swim, most streaming services and devices will have the same process.

  1. Get a free trial of Hulu Live TV
  2. Go to the Channel Store or App Store on your device. On Roku, this is called the “Channel Store”.
  3. Find an adult swim channel
  4. Add the Adult Swim app to your device and then open it.
  5. Your Roku device will then show you an activation code and a URL.
  6. Using a computer or mobile web browser, you navigate to the URL.
  7. You will then be asked for a TV provider and username / password. Enter the username and password you use for your Hulu Live TV account.
  8. After you log into the Adult Swim website, your TV screen will refresh. You should now have access to new episodes of Teenage Euthanasia through the Adult Swim app.

Supported streaming devices

The Adult Swim Go app is supported on all of the following streaming devices:

  • Android devices
  • IOS devices
  • Apple tv
  • Roku
  • Android TV
  • Amazon Fire TV
  • and Following

Need more information?

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Declawing ban has not led to increase in cat shelters or euthanasia: SPCA – BC News Tue, 14 Sep 2021 22:20:00 +0000

A new study conducted by the BC SPCA in collaboration with external researchers reveals that a declawing ban has not led to an increase in the number of cat shelters or to euthanasia.

In 2018, the College of Veterinarians of British Columbia announced a ban on feline declawing, a move hailed by animal welfare organizations.

“For two decades, the BC SPCA has opposed procedures such as declawing, tail trimming, ear trimming and devocalization that impact an animal’s ability to benefit from a voucher. wellness and expressing natural behaviors, so we were thrilled when the ban was announced, ”says Dr. Emilia Gordon, senior director of animal health at the BC SPCA.

“But opponents of declawing bans often express concerns that this could lead to a greater cession of cats to animal shelters and we wanted to understand if those concerns were justified.”

Over the summer, Dr Gordon and Dr Karen van Haaften, Senior Behavior and Wellness Officer, collaborated with external researchers Dr Alexandre Ellis from Shelter Outreach Consultation Services and Dr Sasha Protopopova from the program. of Animal Welfare at the University of British Columbia, to conduct an in-depth analysis.

This study went beyond simple admission and euthanasia counts, also including length of stay, guardian requests for euthanasia, and a detailed examination of admission and results with formal statistical methods.

“We wanted to do a formal peer-reviewed analysis so that we could answer the question that has been asked so many times: Does a declawing ban result in more cats ending up in shelters or being euthanized? ? Dr Gordon said. “And 74,587 cats in BC have spoken: they haven’t.”

The team analyzed six years of data (including three years before and after the ban) representing the majority of animal shelters in the province of British Columbia. After analyzing the records of 74,587 cats, they found:

There was no significant difference in abandonment for destructive scratching, and overall this is a rare reason for people to abandon cats (only 50 cats over six years).

There was a decrease in the number of cats entering the shelter and a decrease in the euthanasia of cats.

Cats spent less time at the shelter waiting to be adopted after the ban than before.

“As far as we know, the claims by opponents of the declawing ban that the bans could lead to further abandonment of cats in animal shelters are not supported by any data, anywhere,” said Dr Gordon. “Now we know for sure that in British Columbia that did not happen.”

In fact, another recent BC SPCA study showed that 82.6% of returned cats were due to human reasons such as housing, human health, or financial issues. Among the smallest percentage of cat-related reasons, aggression and dirt in the house are the most common reasons. According to Dr. Gordon, both can be made worse by declawing.

According to Dr Gordon, the data points to two important factors: the declawing ban has not increased cat consumption in shelters and more support is needed for families to tackle the human factors associated with abandonment. pets.

“We hope this data can be used by vets, veterinary regulators, animal shelters and community members to support bans on unnecessary and painful cosmetic surgeries and to start discussions on how we are approaching them. systemic problems in our society that separate families from their pets. “

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Faith-based hospitals and nursing homes could ban euthanasia under proposal Tue, 14 Sep 2021 09:43:37 +0000

Another of Mr Janetzki’s amendments would open up the scheme to people who are likely to die from a neurodegenerative disease, illness or medical problem within 12 months.

Health Minister Yvette D’Ath said she supported ‘intention’ but there would be problems assessing a patient’s decision-making abilities while being treated for the disease Alzheimer’s disease, and there was a risk that the patients would be coerced.

“I understand this disease – I understand because my mother passed away from Alzheimer’s disease,” she said, holding back tears, before stopping to take a sip of water. “And 15 years later, that does not facilitate the discussions.

“I know what she would choose – she would choose VAD. I know we had a lot of conversations about how we wanted to live and die.

“But it’s not as easy as adding a line [to the bill]. “

Under another of Mr Janetzki’s amendments, a physician approving euthanasia should have experience in the disease, illness or medical condition concerned, addressing a concern raised by Catholic Health Australia.

People wishing to access euthanasia should receive counseling on palliative care options, and physicians with a conscientious objection would not be required to refer a person to a practitioner willing to perform euthanasia.

LNP leader David Crisafulli, who did not support the bill, said he had not let the debate become politicized.

While the two main parties allowed a conscience vote on abortion laws in 2018, three members of the LNP – Tim Nicholls, Jann Stuckey and Steven Minnikin – voted against the majority of their party colleagues and supported The law project. This despite an email from a state electoral board threatening to disapprove and comments from then-president Gary Spence, who told members they could put their preselection at risk.

Mr Crisafulli did not refer to the abortion debate – the last time Queensland MPs got a conscience vote – but said there would be a real conscience vote on euthanasia .


“I did not allow this to be politicized in my community, my party hall or at the headquarters of our political movement,” he said.

“This is a real vote of conscience, and you will see it in the individual decisions taken this week among LNP MPs.”

Mr Crisafulli said he believed in an individual’s right to make a decision in their own best interest, free from state influence and obstruction.

But he was concerned about people’s equal access to palliative care.

“While my heart hurts for people facing great pain and terminal illness, I cannot allow them to die because of flawed legislation,” he said.

The debate continues, with MPs due to vote on Thursday evening.

If passed, Queensland would become the fifth state to legalize voluntary euthanasia and enter into force in January 2023.

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The delta of records | Commissioners approve funding for LUV 4 Animals Sat, 11 Sep 2021 02:05:00 +0000

BUCKHANNON – Upshur County Commissioners approved funds for LUV 4 Animals on Thursday morning to complement project initiatives. LUV 4 Animals has been a 501c3 tax-exempt public charity since 2016. The organization assists the Lewis-Upshur Animal Control Facility by helping to facilitate the adoption of shelter animals by raising funds for their sterilization before they leave facility, as well as emergency medical treatment. . They also welcome animals, network and transport animals to out-of-state rescues and vet appointments.

LUV 4 Animals also helps reduce overcrowding of pets in the community, as they find sterilization and sterilization options at low cost, according to Robin Keough, who came to speak with the commissioners on behalf of the organization Thursday morning. They also help pay veterinary bills for emergencies, both in the facility and in the community. Keough asked the county commissioners for $ 3,000 to help them in their efforts.

Keough herself has raised several sick puppies and dogs in need that she says “ended up in the pound.” Surgeries in 2020 included the amputation of a dog’s limb, several x-rays and several purchases of antibiotics for ear, eye and skin infections. In 2020, they paid for the spaying and neutering of 34 shelter dogs and 56 cats. Most of these animals were transported and housed by LUV 4 Animals volunteers, and each was placed in a home, according to Keough.

Until July 2021, the group spent $ 13,000 on veterinarians in the region. In August alone, they spent $ 2,600, mainly for the sterilization and sterilization of animals at the L-UAC shelter. Due to the high volume at local vets, LUV 4 Animals also donated $ 3,500 this year to out-of-state rescues to help cover verification costs once L-UAC animals are there. were transported, Keough reported.

Already this year, 89 cats have been sterilized. Tina Phillips, a volunteer with LUV 4 Animals, has become the Cats Person and works with several low-cost spay / neuter clinics, according to Keough. L-UAC dramatically reduced its rate of euthanasia, and added: “I think Jan Cochran [L-UAC Director] would confirm that this is due to our efforts to sterilize and neuter animals prior to adoption. People want to adopt a healthy controlled animal.

In previous years, the euthanasia rate for cats was close to 90%, Keough reported; however, last year it had fallen to 30%. Impressively, no healthy adoptable dog has been euthanized for lack of space in the past year. Although Keough explains that they still have a long way to go, she hopes those numbers will be even better next year.

LUV 4 Animals takes most of the animals to a veterinarian in Elkins who offers them a “very generous discount”. This vet would charge around $ 125, depending on other factors, but that cost includes an electronic collar, rabies vaccine, and pain management. This price is significantly cheaper than vets in areas such as Baltimore and Pennsylvania, where most of these animals are transported for rescue. Keough explained that when checking prices in these areas, most vets were quoting between $ 500 and $ 700, which doesn’t include anything other than spaying and neutering. Keough also noted that of the three dogs she took to the vet this week, all have tested positive for Lymes disease, the prevalence of which is increasing in this area.

LUV 4 Animals had two dogs neutered this month, but they have appointments for 18 more in September, October and November in Elkins. The organization is running out of funds and cannot make these appointments if it does not receive help, Keough said. She noted that they are and have been unable to host several of their typical fundraisers due to COVID, which has contributed significantly to their low funds. The $ 3,000 requested from the county commissioners would be used to cover the costs of sterilization and sterilization.

Commissioner Kristie Tenney thanked Keough for all of her time and effort in this organization. Keough responded, “We have a lot of support in the community which really helps us a lot financially. But we don’t want to bleed them dry. This is the first time that LUV 4 Animals has contacted County Commissioners to request funding. Commissioner Sam Nolte added: “You have all been a great help with the pound. It takes a lot of pressure off them. “

After a short discussion, the commissioners approved the $ 3,000, which will be spent on the sterilization and sterilization of the animals in the shelter. Keough said, “We just act in faith, that if we put the money in, they’ll be adopted.”

LUV 4 Animals will be hosting two adoption events on Saturday, September 11 at Buckhannon and Weston Tractor Supply Company stores from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. new furry house!

In addition, the commissioners visited Buckhannon-Upshur High School for a property inspection regarding the amphitheater renovation project proposed by the Youth Environmental Club. YEC President Ty Landis visited the Commissioners in July to seek their support. Although the item remained on the table during Thursday’s meeting, following the property inspection, county commissioners said they would make a decision in the near future on the project.

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Gene therapies require neurological monitoring Tue, 07 Sep 2021 22:31:11 +0000

In the wake of recent headlines on Clinical Blockages in Gene Therapy Trials, the FDA’s two-day Adeno-Associated Virus (AAV) Vectors Safety Hearing examined the complex issues posed by the administration.

At Thursday and Friday, the agency’s Cell, Tissue and Gene Therapies Advisory Committee (CTGTAC) organized sessions on the risk of oncogenesis, liver toxicity, and thrombotic microangiopathy in AAV vectors for gene therapy, culminating in two sessions on neurotoxicity: one on dorsal root ganglia (DRG) toxicity and one on brain MRI results.

DRG toxicity

Like carcinomas, neuronal damage associated with AAV vectors has emerged mainly in preclinical data. Toxicity in sensory neurons of DRG has largely not been reported in humans, but in non-human primates administration of AAV through the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) and intravenously has been reported. associated with axonal degeneration in some pathways of the spinal cord and peripheral nerves.

One factor that appears to make a difference in the severity of axonal degeneration is the transgene itself, noted guest speaker James Wilson, MD, PhD, of the Perelman School of Medicine in Philadelphia and a pioneer in gene therapy research. Decreased expression of the transgene in cells that express microRNA that is present almost exclusively in DRG can reduce pathology, he added.

It is not clear how the toxicity of DRG clinically affects non-human primates. Of the 483 animals treated by Wilson’s group, neurological findings appeared in five: four were mild and reversible, and one was severe and required euthanasia.

In these studies, the researchers were unable to measure nerve conduction velocity (PNV), but other gene therapy research showed that the animals rarely had abnormalities in CNV. “I realize this is anecdotal, but in this study it appears that NCV may be a good measure of what’s really going on from a pathological standpoint,” Wilson said. NCV evaluations have been limited in human trials so far, but have been used more in recent studies, he pointed out.

If an animal was suffering from paresthesia, it would be difficult to know, Wilson added. Likewise, some humans who receive AAV vectors may experience pain or neuropathic symptoms and not be able to express it – especially young patients or people with cognitive or motor problems – the limbs observed. committee, agreeing that closer monitoring is needed.

The new AAV treatment should carefully study neurotoxicity, said Raymond Roos, a member of the temporary voting committee, University of Chicago: “In the case of humans, nerve conduction velocities or MRIs might be useful before. and after administration of AAV. “

Brain MRI results

Intraparenchymal administration of AAV vectors has been evaluated in several disorders, including a form of Batten disease known as CLN2 disease, said guest lecturer Ronald Crystal, MD, PhD, of Weill Cornell Medical College in New York City. .

While children with CLN2 disease benefited from AAV vector gene therapy, showing less decline in motor and language ratings than similar children in a natural history study, brain damage appeared on the brain. MRI, he observed.

“What we noticed was that there were MRI abnormalities at the end of the catheter,” Crystal said. The finding had no clinical correlates but was consistent with localized inflammation or edema, he said.

“There have been no other significant adverse events that we can relate directly to the vector in these children,” Crystal said. One aspect of CLN2 disease is chronic seizures, so in the short term, adverse events can be difficult to assess, he noted.

“It is not known whether systemic immunosuppression can suppress an inflammatory / immune response such as the type we have seen,” he added. “I think this is something that needs to be investigated in the future.”

Changes in MRI have been shown in other studies where an AAV vector was injected directly into the brain. Last year, the FDA put a Voyager on clinical hold. Parkinson’s disease gene therapy trial after some participants showed abnormalities on the MRI, for example, but the significance of those results was unclear. Even in Parkinson’s disease, “it appears that we need new, innovative technical approaches to AAV vector delivery,” Roos suggested.

The imaging changes on the MRI appear to be minor, some committee members noted. Vector tracing and other investigations in non-human primates may help clarify MRI abnormalities, others added. MRI-guided infusions and follow-up MRIs at regular intervals may also alleviate potential CNS damage in humans.

“In all of these cases, we need to keep the issues of risk and benefit in mind,” Roos noted. “This could be particularly the case in certain progressive and difficult to treat human central nervous system diseases.”

  • Judy George covers neurology and neuroscience news for MedPage Today, writing about brain aging, Alzheimer’s disease, dementia, MS, rare diseases, epilepsy, autism, headaches , stroke, Parkinson’s disease, ALS, concussions, CTE, sleep, pain and more. To follow

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Liver toxicity in gene therapy trials may deserve stricter entry criteria Fri, 03 Sep 2021 22:30:47 +0000

An FDA advisory committee has proposed lower vector doses, stricter exclusion criteria, and long-term animal studies to address liver toxicities associated with adeno-associated virus (AAV) vector gene therapies .

During the second of four AAV safety sessions, the Advisory Committee on Cell, Tissue and Gene Therapies (CTGTAC) assessed the evidence of hepatotoxicity – ranging from elevated liver enzymes to liver failure and death – seen with the products in clinical trials for hemophilia, spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) and X-linked myotubular myopathy (XLMTM).

“Most of the hepatotoxicity seen at this point in hemophilia trials is fortunately more of a limitation in effectiveness than a real safety concern,” said Lindsey George, MD, Children’s Hospital. of Philadelphia at an Open Data Security Presentation.

However, she noted, there have been reports of acute liver failure in SMA and death in a trial involving XLMTM.

In the ASPIRO trial testing AT132 gene therapy in XLMTM, three deaths were presumed to be related to complications of hepatic failure in 17 patients included in the highest dose cohort (3.5E14 vg / kg), despite the fact that the The trial excluded patients with a history of clinically significant liver disease.

“As for the doses in this trial, they’re essentially the highest I’ve seen in any AAV trial,” said George.

The trial was then suspended and then lifted by the FDA late last year to a lower dose (1.3E14 yd / kg), but the liver problems continued. Earlier this week, the sponsor of the Astellas trial voluntarily announced a suspension of screening and testing after a patient has developed abnormal liver function within one month of administration.

“I think it is important to recognize that hepatotoxicity-related morbidity and mortality has only been observed with administration of systemic doses of AAV greater than 1E14 vg / kg, and indeed only in pediatric patients, ”said George. “So maybe one of the big things is to keep fighting for lower doses of vectors as part of the clinical development of these programs.”

To determine the appropriate dosage, committee member Raymond Roos, MD, University of Medicine of Chicago, noted that “there are different serotypes of AAV vectors and different transgenes, so it is difficult to generalize about a dose of particular vector “.

“I think it’s important to do some animal work to get a feel for this,” he said. “But, ultimately in clinical trials, it would be important to look at the dose response – starting at a low dose and challenging this patient population with increasing amounts of the AAV vector.”

CTGTAC President Lisa Butterfield, PhD, University of California, San Francisco, said that an upper limit does not appear to be the best approach, and that the total dose of the vector genome per kg or taking into account of a certain measure of body mass index for patients might be preferable. . Additionally, she said, it remains to be seen what role the vector dose and capsids played in the deaths seen in the XLMTM study.

Discussing mitigating the risk of liver injury, Theo Heller, MD, of the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, suggested that relying on liver enzyme measurements or ultrasound exams is not adequate. , and that strict exclusion criteria in trials and careful evaluation of patients “is essential”.

“The concept of hemophilia of not enrolling people with bypass fibrosis or greater is something that could be emulated in other diseases,” he said.

Learn from animal testing

Committee member James M. Wilson, MD, PhD, director of the gene therapy program at Perelman School of Medicine in Philadelphia, said that primates as a model offer several areas of agreement with human studies: “It It is important to note that the threshold for severe toxicity requiring minimal euthanasia with primates is almost perfect with the threshold for human studies, which is 2E14 vg / kg, ”he said.

But, there are important differences, he noted. “The severe liver toxicity seen in humans is often delayed compared to what we see in primates, which is a bit earlier.”

There are also several key limitations to the use of non-human primates – that is, macaques – in these studies, Wilson said. For example, it is difficult to assess the impact of disease factors in these animals because they do not have co-morbidities. Additionally, when macaques get sick at the start of a study, researchers are required to euthanize them; Wilson suggested that if animals received the same type of supportive care as humans, it could allow for a more in-depth assessment of these toxicities.

Regarding the acute toxicity seen in primates, however, Caroline Zeiss, DACVP, DACLAM, of the Department of Comparative Medicine at Yale University in New Haven, Connecticut, said, “We don’t see quite the same in people. But being able to follow these animals longer, and later, could be an opportunity to learn more about the mechanism of both acute and long-term effects, she added.

  • Mike Bassett is a writer specializing in oncology and hematology. He is based in Massachusetts.

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Rtl today – Simone Asselborn-Bintz: deputy mayor of Sanem exasperated by cyberstalking Wed, 01 Sep 2021 07:06:06 +0000 Simone Asselborn-Bintz reacts to a letter that circulated on social networks following the recent euthanasia of her dog.

The LSAP politician’s dog recently had to be shot.

Soon after, a letter purportedly written by a dog began to appear on social media claiming that he was not sick at all and that his owner had wanted to get rid of him. The letter indirectly implies that the said owner was the deputy mayor of Sanem, Simone Asselborn-Bintz. She vehemently denies the allegations.

We did indeed have a dog, which unfortunately only lived until three years. We had to make the decision a month ago because he was ill, after spending a year and a half with doctors and coaches trying to cure him, to no avail. So a month ago, we had to make the decision that we couldn’t keep him, because he was unpredictable, and that was untenable, both for him and for us. It was really a very difficult decision. “
The animal rights organization “Give Us a Voice” posted this letter online. The post was shared hundreds of times and elicited many comments.

For the politician, it was a terrible experience. She received death threats interspersed with insults. It is not known who wrote the letter, so she took legal action against strangers. She is also considering legal action against those who wrote the comments on social media.

“The aim is probably to harm me politically. We don’t know where the letter came from.”

“Give us a voice” was contacted by a lawyer and took the letter. But that does not appease Simone Asselborn-Bintz.

It is incomprehensible to me that you publish an anonymous letter, without asking yourself where it came from and what it is, from where it is clear from the title who it attacks.

“Give us a voice” said the letter was sent to them anonymously, but they removed it to prevent further harm to people. They didn’t want to go any further.

The question should not become political.

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