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Year : 2021  |  Volume : 7  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 3-9

Advance directives for euthanasia in India: Role of psychiatrist

Department of Psychiatry, Malla Reddy Institute of Medical Sciences, Hyderabad, Telangana, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Bhogaraju Anand
Department of Psychiatry, Malla Reddy Institute of Medical Sciences, Suraram, Hyderabad - 500 055, Telangana
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/tjp.tjp_19_21

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This review article starts by defining Good death, Euthanasia, and Advance Directives (ADs). Most of the religions in India do not support self-annihilation although exceptions are made in cases of “Samadhi” by saints. Indian law permits the donation of organs in brain dead patients, while Euthanasia is viewed as a criminal act. The case of Aruna Shanbaug and a plea for Euthanasia resulted in the Honorable Apex court of India permitting passive euthanasia and also issued ADs. It is now for the parliament to debate and enact. The role of a psychiatrist at present appears limited in the context of Euthanasia and Advanced Directives, but in future, importance might increase with psychiatric comorbidities being higher in incurable conditions and suffering. Literature from foreign countries shows that patients with mental illness have also undergone Euthanasia which is of grave concern.

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