This is another blog about recurring headlines that are ageist and continue to build the image of old people as a burden on society. It is on the subject of assisted suicide which rather ominously I have written about 13 times in the last few years. (See my earlier posts by clicking on Assisted Suicide in the TAG CLOUD).
The latest such headline was front page in the Daily Mail – 27th April 2015.
“Over 75? sign here if you’re ready for death”.
It was commenting on new NHS guidance to GP’s suggesting they draw up end-of-life plans for over 75’s and then asking them in advance of any life threatening illness if they want a “do not resuscitate” notice above their heads.
It dovetails neatly into a careless NHS that denies treatments to older patients. It also simplifies the path to take us a step closer to assisted suicide with no recriminations.
A “Doctor Harold Shipman” recipe for later life care.
This brutal message to those over 75 is entirely inconsistent with the compassionate approach to end-of-life care we would all hope to receive.
We should be celebrating longevity, not bemoaning the additional burden it places on society. GPs need to give advice to older people on living better lives, not dying better deaths.