16:55 GMT +314 October 2019
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    Number of Euthanasia Cases in Netherlands Increases by 10% in 2016

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    Number of official cases of euthanasia in 2016 made 6,091, a 10 percent increase in comparison to 2015, accounting for four percent of total deaths in the year, local media reported Wednesday citing monitoring boards.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) According to local monitoring boards, a total of 87 percent of euthanasia cases involved people suffering from cancer, nervous system, heart or lungs diseases, the Dutch News website reported.

    The media added that 10 cases saw the rules of the procedure not being followed correctly, and in one case, the doctor was reprimanded for crossing the line when consulting a patient with severe case of dementia.

    According to the monitoring committee chairman Jacob Kohnstamm, there is no easy way to understand the reasons behind increasing number of cases, but the change in the opinion regarding euthanasia could be one of them, the media said.

    Euthanasia became legal in the Netherlands in 2002 under the "Termination of Life on Request and Assisted Suicide (Review Procedures) Act." According to the act, euthanasia and assisted suicide are not considered a crime if they carried out in accordance with several criteria, such as in case of the patient’s "unbearable" suffering, in view of absence of reasonable alternatives and on the patient’s own request. The patient must make an informed choice, and an opinion of a second doctor is also required.

    Other countries that legalized euthanasia include Colombia and Luxembourg, with Switzerland, Germany, Japan, Canada and several US states having legalized assisted suicide.

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