The Globe and Mail
Doctors supporting a Toronto man’s request for a physician-assisted death can keep their names private after a judge called their interest in shielding their identities “obvious.”
An 80-year-old man with advanced-stage, aggressive lymphoma is seeking a court’s permission for an assisted death, with the support of his family, doctors and a psychiatrist. Canada’s Criminal Code ban on physician-assisted death is set to expire on June 6, but the Supreme Court of Canada this year authorized Superior Court judges to approve applications from mentally competent adults who are suffering unbearably and irremediably from disease.
The ruling helps define how courts that are normally open and public will accommodate the intensely personal applications for an assisted death. . . [Full text]
The Globe and Mail
Lawyers for an 80-year-old man with aggressive lymphoma asked a Toronto judge on Thursday for privacy for him, his family and his doctors as he seeks a court’s permission for an assisted death. But a media lawyer argued it may be in the public interest to know the names of the doctors, and said he would like to see evidence that would explain why their identities should remain private.
“There are going to be other applications like this – it may be relevant to the public and the court to hear whether these are always the same doctors … rubber-stamp types,” lawyer Peter Jacobsen, representing The Globe and Mail, Postmedia, the CBC and CTV, told Justice Thomas McEwen of the Ontario Superior Court. “And for those who wish to come forward in the future, they may wish to know who these doctors are.”
Andrew Faith, a lawyer for the man with lymphoma, replied that putting the doctors’ names “on the front page of the newspaper” would make it more difficult for other patients, and perhaps even his own client, to find a doctor willing to provide this medical service. . . [Full Text]