Opponents of assisted dying often use as an argument that assisted dying is not necessary because good quality palliative care can alleviate suffering at end of life.
This report from England concludes that 17 people a day suffer at the end of their lives, despite the best efforts of hospice and palliative care.
In research commissioned for this report, the Office of Health Economics concludes that, even if every dying person who needed it had access to the excellent level of care currently provided in hospices, 6,394 people a year would still have no effective relief of their pain in the final three months of their life. This equates to 17 people dying in pain every day.
It outlines, in excruciating detail, reports from palliative care specialists themselves and from families of people who have died, circumstances where palliative care, and even terminal sedation, has failed to bring the promised relief.
The experiences shared in this report do not represent the majority but they do reflect the reality of dying for a small but significant group,
In 2019 British people are being forced to endure unbelievable suffering at the end of life. Some will retch at the stench of their own body rotting. Some will vomit their own faeces. Some will suffocate, slowly, inexorably, over several days, their last moments of life disfigured by terror. Any one of us might suffer such a fate.
Read this report, if you dare, about the limitations of palliative care/hospice. Warning: It is not easy reading.
References are at the end of this pdf report.