The bill that seeks to regulate euthanasia or medically assisted death in Colombia was approved in the first debate in the First Commission of the Congress of the Republic.
The initiative, which is being led by Senator Humberto de la Calle, has as its priority guaranteeing a dignified death.
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The congressman assured that although there are still three debates left for its approval in the Legislature, much progress has been made with the approval in this first debate.
“After several attempts, we have achieved approval, in the first committee of the Senate, of the project on medically assisted death. It is a project that is based on the dignity of life and freedom, so that people who do not share these ideas do not go to the process and that’s it, everything according to their thoughts and free will,” explained de la Calle.
The most controversial points within the proposal are related to medical conscientious objection and the age to access medically assisted death, so they will be topics that will continue on the table in the next debates.
And last week, the debate managed to advance in such a way that after having discussed 10 missing articles, it was able to overcome the first filter in Congress.
The representative to the Chamber, Juan Carlos Losada, also expressed his joy that the project was supported in the first debate, through a video in which he appears alongside de la Calle giving the new news.
“Our project that regulates access to euthanasia was approved in the first debate! This is the first step to pay off the debt that Congress has had since 1997, when the Constitutional Court recognized the right to a dignified death,” Losada wrote on his X network, formerly Twitter.
Some of the most challenging and controversial points are contained in articles 56 and 57, which indicate how conscientious objection would work for a doctor, in the event that a patient requests a medically assisted death.
For example, article 56 states that no medical professional assigned to perform a medically assisted death procedure is obliged to practice it “because they consider it incompatible with their personal convictions.” But he must present his conscientious objection in writing as evidence of his position regarding this practice.
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So these articles will be taken into account during the next debates, as well as article 39, which is one of the most controversial. This seeks the “recognition of the right of children and adolescents” to die through this modality, being between 6 and 18 years old.
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