campaigner Philip Nitschke is trying to use a legal
loophole to obtain the euthanasia drug Nembutal for two South Australians. They
are among six terminally ill patients who have asked Dr Nitschke to import the
sedative through the Therapeutic Goods Administration’s special access scheme
for patients with a “legitimate need.” 

there’s going to be a considerable degree of suspicion because I am the
applicant on their behalf,” Dr Nitschke admitted. He argued that while a
patient could use the drug to end his or her life, that was not his intention.
He said he therefore did not expect he would be liable for any criminal charge
if a patient were to use the drug to end his or her life. “It would not be
being prescribed as a euthanasia drug,” he said. “I would expect the patients
to die of their diseases.”

the TGA grants Dr Nitschke’s application, he will then need a permit from the
Department of Health and Ageing for clearance on importation. ~, Aug 2

Cross-posted from BioEdge. 

Michael Cook

Michael Cook is the editor of MercatorNet. He lives in Sydney, Australia.