The President of the Canadian Society of Palliative Care Physicians (CSPCP), Dr. Susan MacDonald, and the Chair of the CSPCP Committee on Hastened Death, Dr. Monica Branigan, co-presented to the Federal Expert Panel on Assisted Death on Tuesday, November 3 in Toronto, at the panel’s invitation. The 90-minute session consisted of an opening statement, a slide presentation of the CSPCP’s Key Messages and a focus on important points followed by an extensive question and answer session.
The questions posed by the panel were very thoughtful and demonstrated that the documentation sent beforehand had been thoroughly reviewed and the presentation listened to. The theme of the presentation was “Do no harm”. Various options to mitigate harm to patients (both those who do and those who do not want hastened death) and to clinicians (both those who will work on this service and those who will not) were discussed. Drs. MacDonald and Branigan left the meeting feeling that they were heard and that the position of the CSPCP was understood.