First legally assisted dying case in Australia

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An Australian woman with terminal cancer has become the first person to end their life under new assisted dying laws, reports BBC News. Kerry Robertson, 61, died at a nursing home in the state of Victoria in July. The report says she was granted permission to use the controversial legislation – which exists only in Victoria but is being considered in other states – after a 26-day approval process. Her family said she was able to have “the empowered death that she wanted”.

Robertson was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2010, and it later spread to her bones, lungs, brain and liver. She decided to stop chemotherapy and radiation treatment in March after the side effects and pain became “intolerable”, her family said. The report says Victoria’s legislation, which came into effect in June, allows terminally ill patients who meet certain requirements the right to access lethal drugs.

Laws allowing terminally ill patients to legally end their lives with a doctor’s supervision have been passed in countries including Canada, the Netherlands and Belgium.

BBC News report

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