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The Center for Bioethics and Human Dignity: The U.S. Supreme Court Decision on Oregon Will Impact British Parliamentary Debate


CHICAGO, Oct. 5 -- Days after the Supreme Court is scheduled to hear a challenge to Oregonís physician-assisted suicide law, the House of Lords of the British Parliament will reconsider its Assisted Dying for the Terminally Ill Bill.

ďThis U.S. court decision could impact physician-assisted suicide and euthanasia policy all over the world,Ē said newly appointed CBHD President and former member of Britainís General Medical Council, Dr. Andrew Fergusson. ďThe debate over Oregonís physician-assisted suicide legislation could be critical for the UK and I hope the Supreme Court will reverse the position in Oregon.Ē

Lord Joffe, who introduced the previous bill, has promised to reintroduce legislation before the British Parliament that would, based on the Oregon model, legalize physician-assisted suicide, and Parliament holds a debate on October 10. The case before the US Supreme Court involves a clash between the stateís power to regulate the practice of medicine and the federal governmentís authority to regulate drugs. Since Oregon legalized physician-assisted suicide, physicians have been prescribing drugs the FDA regulates for other, non-lethal purposes.

For Interviews with Center Personnel contact Sarah J. Flashing, director of communications, at 847-317-4097, or by e-mail at

About The Center for Bioethics and Human Dignity The Center for Bioethics and Human Dignity is a 501(c)(3) non-profit international center located just north of Chicago, Illinois. Its mission is to develop reasoned perspectives on all of todayís bioethical issues and to disseminate them to health care professionals, academia, cultural and church leaders, public policy makers, and the media in order to protect human dignity.


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