Spanish win the right to medically assisted death

New Frame

Alex Čizmić, Ricard Gonzalez

Carme Barahona wears a smile that is only erased when she recalls how her son Ivan Martí died in late 2017. “He sent me a message saying: ‘Thanks for taking care of me, mom. I am going to rest’.” 

Marti, 43, had been diagnosed with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, an incurable neurodegenerative disease that results in a progressive loss of movement and eventually death. Right after receiving her son’s farewell message, Barahona made sure to clock in at her job to prove she had not helped him take his life. Otherwise, she might have been imprisoned. 

Since 25 June, however, this risk no longer exists. Spain has legislated that its citizens who suffer from a “chronic and incurable disease, with an unbearable physical or mental suffering” have the right to ask for medical assistance to die. . . continue reading

Spain legalises euthanasia and assisted suicide despite conservative opposition


Spain became on Thursday the fifth country in Europe to legalise assisted suicide and euthanasia for long-suffering patients of incurable diseases and people with unbearable permanent conditions.

The Spanish parliament’s lower house voted 202-140 with two abstentions on the final passage of the euthanasia bill.

MPs from Spain’s left-wing governing coalition and other parties supported it, while conservative and far-right lawmakers voted against the legislation, vowing to overturn it in the future. . . continue reading

Should religions freedom be diluted into a general freedom of conscience law?

Spain opens the debate

Evangelical Focus

The conversation about a law of freedom of conscience has gained importance in the last months in Spain.

The leading political party in government, PSOE (Social Democrats), is prioritising the start of the discussions in this year 2021, confirmed the Spanish Vice President, Carmen Calvo.

So far, the PSOE has not shared many details of a new law that could replace the Organic Law of Religious Freedom of 1980. But the party of President Pedro Sánchez has expressed the will to recover parts of the proposal outlined in 2010 by the former head of government José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero. Back then, the project was discarded in the midst of strong tensions between the government and the Spanish Roman Catholic Church, and the external factor of a visit of Pope Benedict XVI to the country. . .[Full text]

Spanish and US scientists go to China to create human-monkey chimeras


Michael Cook

In a stunning example of evading ethical controversy by exporting it, Spanish and American researchers have created monkey-human chimeras in China. The hybrid embryos will be destroyed after they develop a central nervous system and will not be brought to term. . . [Full text]

Spanish physicians urged to disobey law on treating immigrants

According to a law that went into effect on 1 September, Spanish physicians may not provide health care for undocumented migrants except in cases of emergency, pregnancy, or delivery. The Spanish Society of Family and Community Medicine (SEMFyC), supported by the Spanish Medical Colleges, holds that the law is contrary to medical ethics and is advising physicians to become “conscientious objectors” to the law.  [Hastings Center Bioethics Forum]