The long awaited report from the Commission on Assisted Dying, named after its Chairman Lord Falconer was finally released this month. Following a twelve month consultation period collecting evidence, the expert panel which makes up the Commission has published an evaluation of this evidence which aims to establish how an assisted dying law can work in practice. The Commission concluded that the choice of assisted dying could be safely offered to terminally ill people who:
- are suffering at the end of life and likely to die within twelve months;
- satisfy particular eligibility criteria (aged 18+, have mental capacity, are making a voluntary decision and are not being influenced by others).
The Commission does not recommend that chronically ill, disabled or older adults be allowed the option of assistance to die under a new law. It also stresses that all individuals should be entitled to core rights in end-of-life care. This comes as a welcome addition to the ongoing debate in UK on assisted dying and greater control at the end of life.