The lower house of the Chilean Parliament on Tuesday April 20 approved a bill authorizing euthanasia, which must be referred to the Senate, a sensitive subject in Latin America which is overwhelmingly Catholic.
Read also: These doctors worried about the proposed law on euthanasia
Introduced to parliament seven years ago by center-left opposition lawmakers, the bill would give terminally ill patients the right to decide how they wish to end their lives, whether through palliative care or euthanasia. This right could only be invoked by people aged 18 or over suffering from
"an incurable, irreversible and progressive disease, without the possibility of a response to curative treatments and with a limited lifespan"
, specifies the adopted bill. unanimously Tuesday. The patient must be conscious and of sound mind to request euthanasia, or have left a will explicitly indicating their desire beforehand.
To read also: Euthanasia: "The framed freedom for the dying, to choose his end of life, is a matter of human dignity"
Among the Latin American countries, Colombia is the only country to allow euthanasia since 1997. In Mexico, a patient or a member of his family can ask that the life not be prolonged by artificial means, while the Uruguayan Congress examines a bill on euthanasia.
In February, a Peruvian court, in a single decision, ordered the government to respect the wish of a woman with polio to be allowed to die.