Junta sets up commission to study euthanasia requests in Andalucía

An association defending the right to die with dignity complained last week that the new law was "stalled" due to the lack of a commission


The regional commission that will review requests for euthanasia has been formed. The group is made up of 13 professionals - five medics, five legal experts and three nurses. Its formation had been on hold since March forcing an association defending the right to die to complain last week.

The Right to Die with Dignity association (DMD) had said that there have already been people in Andalucía who have submitted requests for euthanasia but have not been able to take their cases forward until now.

Allowed in law

The law now recognises the right to euthanasia for people who have a serious, chronic and incapacitating condition that causes constant and intolerable physical or psychological suffering and, in addition, there is no possibility of cure or improvement.

Help to die is also contemplated for people with a serious and incurable disease that causes constant and unbearable physical or psychological suffering, without the possibility of tolerable relief, and with a limited life prognosis.

The request for euthanasia can only be made by the person who wants to receive help for their death. The process begins with a first written request from the patient to the responsible doctor, who must sign it and verify that he or she meets the requirements. Within two days there will be a meeting in which the doctor and patient will discuss the therapeutic alternatives available, as well as the possibility of accessing palliative care. At least 15 days later, the patient must submit a second request and meet again.

Two doctors must agree

Next, the doctor will contact a second medical professional, unrelated to them or the applicant, who will assess whether the request meets the requirements provided by law. If both doctors agree, a report for approval is sent to the newly constituted evaluation committee.