Doctor faces prosecution over euthanasia

Dutch physician should have checked whether the woman 'still had a death wish'

For the first time since euthanasia laws were introduced in the Netherlands in 2002, a Dutch doctor faces prosecution over the death of a patient with Alzheimer’s.

The 74-year-old patient, who had previously drawn up a living will, died after the doctor slipped a sedative into her coffee before administering a lethal drug in 2016, according to a report in The Guardian.

The doctor had already been found by the medical complaints body to have breached guidelines and to have “overstepped the line” in her treatment of the woman.

A public prosecutor in The Hague said in a statement that the doctor should have checked whether the woman still had a death wish at the time of her assisted death.

“Although the woman had regularly stated that she wanted to die, on other occasions she had said that she did not to want to die," the statement said.