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Books, Journals, New Media
February 10, 1999

EuthanasiaEuthanasia and Law in the Netherlands

Author Affiliations

Harriet S.MeyerMD, Contributing EditorJonathan D.EldredgeMLS, PhD, Journal Review EditorRobertHoganMD, adviser for new media


Not Available


by John Griffiths, Alex Bood, and Heleen Weyers, 382 pp, with illus, $44.50, ISBN 90-5356-275-3, Amsterdam, the Netherlands, Amsterdam University Press, Ann Arbor, University of Michigan Press, 1998.

JAMA. 1999;281(6):568-569. doi:10.1001/jama.281.6.568-JBK0210-2-1

How could a small country that suffered under the heel of the Nazi jackboot (recall Anne Frank) adopt, within one generation, a system of euthanasia for the terminally ill?

As a teaching hospital's Bioethics Committee cochair who practiced for many years in Oregon (the only state to have legalized physician-assisted suicide), my curiosity prompted me to go look at the Dutch system. In the summer of 1998, I spent a week in the Netherlands interviewing key people in their system of euthanasia. A tip from Kathleen Haley, JD, Executive Director of Oregon's Board of Medical Examiners, led me to purchase and read Euthanasia and Law in the Netherlands before I made my visit. It was the best possible preparation for the trip, and the book is a must for anyone interested in euthanasia as practiced by the Dutch.

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