News release

May 13, 2022, | Ottawa Ontario | Health Canada

Medical assistance in dying (MAID) remains an important and deeply personal issue for many Canadians. The Government of Canada is committed to a legal framework for MAID that ensures autonomy and freedom of choice for Canadians, has strong safeguards, and ensures the compassionate and rights-based consideration of every request for MAID.

Today, the Honourable Jean-Yves Duclos, Minister of Health, and the Honourable David Lametti, Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada, with the support of the Honourable Carolyn Bennett, Minister of Mental Health and Addictions and Associate Minister of Health, tabled the Final Report of the Expert Panel on MAID and Mental Illness in Parliament. This was a requirement of the MAID legislation that came into force on March 17, 2021.

Access to MAID in the case of individuals with a mental illness was delayed for 24 months in the March 2021 legislation to allow the Expert Panel to provide advice to the federal government on the safeguards, protocols and guidance that should apply in these cases.

The report sets out 19 recommendations for establishing a MAID regime that addresses situations regarding incurability, irreversibility, individual capacity, suicidality and the impact of structural vulnerabilities (structural vulnerabilities being the effects of interactions between a person’s sex, gender, socioeconomic status, race/ethnicity, sexuality, or institutional location, with one’s position in society).

The Expert Panel also concluded that many of these concerns are neither unique to requests for MAID from persons with a mental disorder, nor applicable to every requestor who has a mental disorder. In the view of the Expert Panel, their recommendations should apply to any case where similar concerns may arise, irrespective of the requester’s diagnosis. In keeping with their mandate, the Expert Panel has paid particular attention to these concerns in the context of mental disorders.

The Government of Canada values the time and expertise the Expert Panel members have dedicated to this process. The final report and recommendations are the product of careful consideration of all of the available evidence and the experience of the Expert Panel members and the government will review and consider the report carefully. This work will assist Parliament’s Special Joint Committee on Medical Assistance in Dying as it continues its hearings and deliberations in the lead up to its own interim report on MAID and mental illness.

Quotes

“Medical assistance in dying is an important, sensitive, and personal issue for many Canadians. The recommendations in this report involved the consideration of many complex clinical and legal issues to ensure safe and compassionate assessments. I thank the members of the Expert Panel for their important work in preparing this report, which our government will review with the same care and consideration you exhibited in preparing them.”

The Honourable Jean-Yves Duclos
Minister of Health

“Our Government is committed to ensuring that our laws protect all Canadians. Studying the issues relating to MAID and mental disorders, and providing recommendations on how we can safely provide this assistance to those who may want it, was not an easy task. I thank all the members of the Expert Panel for their contributions to this critical work.”

The Honourable David Lametti, P.C., Q.C., M.P.
Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

“As Minister of Mental Health and Addictions, I feel the weight of ensuring that the government moves forward with MAID for persons with a mental disorder in a way that is consistent with the goals of autonomy, equity, and respect. I am grateful to the Expert Panel members for their time, dedication, and thoughtful approach to this complex issue.”

The Honourable Carolyn Bennett
Minister of Mental Health and Addictions and Associate Minister of Health

Quick facts

  • The revised legislation on MAID (former Bill C-7) received Royal Assent and became law on March 17, 2021. The new law expanded eligibility to MAID to individuals whose death is not reasonably foreseeable, while also amending other aspects of the safeguards included in the law.
  • Canadians whose only medical condition is a mental illness, and who otherwise meet all eligibility criteria, will not be eligible for MAID until March 17, 2023. This temporary exclusion provides the Government of Canada time to consider the Expert Panel’s conclusions and recommendations and to respond to them.
  • The Expert Panel’s report will assist the Government and Parliament in considering how best to support the objective of delivering MAID in a safe and compassionate manner.

See the report just click on the picture below here

 

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Contacts

Marie-France Proulx
Press Secretary
Office of the Honourable Jean-Yves Duclos
Minister of Health
613-957-0200

Chantalle Aubertin
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada
613-992-6568
Chantalle.Aubertin@justice.gc.ca

Media Relations
Department of Justice Canada
613-957-4207
media@justice.gc.ca

Maja Staka
Office of the Honourable Carolyn Bennett
Minister of Mental Health and Addictions and Associate Minister of Health
613-957-0200

Media Relations
Health Canada
613-957-2983
media@hc-sc.gc.ca

Public Enquiries:

613-957-2991
1-866-225-0709

This is on the Govt of Canada website go to the link here

 

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