Dr backs assisted suicide bill

30.2.14 Edinburgh.A recent survey revealed that two-thirds of Scots support the Assisted Suicide Bill. 'My Life, My Death, My Choice' is being led by the Humanist Society Scotland and FATE, Friends at the End and has asked members of the public to urge their MSP's to vote in favour of a change in the law. Retired doctor Bob Scott, spokesman, at the campaign launch.

30.2.14 Edinburgh.A recent survey revealed that two-thirds of Scots support the Assisted Suicide Bill. 'My Life, My Death, My Choice' is being led by the Humanist Society Scotland and FATE, Friends at the End and has asked members of the public to urge their MSP's to vote in favour of a change in the law. Retired doctor Bob Scott, spokesman, at the campaign launch.

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A retired doctor from Drymen will give evidence to a Select Committee in Edinburgh in support of a bill to help people end their own life.

Bob Scott (73), who is a celebrant for the Humanist Society of Scotland (HSS), has been involved in this emotive issue since the late Margo MacDonald’s original bill was put forward in 2010, but failed due to lack of support from enough MSPs.

Dr Scott will give evidence in support of the most recent bill - The Assisted Suicide (Scotland) Bill - launched in November 2013, on February 3.

He said: “I have been closely involved with the campaign supporting the bill under the My Life My Death My Choice banner. This is a joint operation between the Humanist Society Scotland (HSS), Friends At The End (FATE) and Doctors for Assisted Suicide (DAS). “

The bill is at the early stages and at present being scrutinised by the Health and Sport Committee - the lead committee covering the proposed legislation. The Justice Committee has already spent a day on it.

Dr Scott added that the main aims of the bill are to allow individuals, who are approaching the end of their lives, to seek assistance in bringing their life to its conclusion and to give legal protection to those who provide such assistance.”

He said: “For many of us the fear of an undignified death is real. Despite advances in medical technology and high-quality palliative care, not everyone achieves a good death, in which pain is kept at bay and a reasonable quality of life is maintained until very close to the end. This Bill attempts to correct that deficiency.

“It will allow those who wish to retain control over their lives the option of securing a dignified death at a time and place of their choosing.”