Vancouver, Canada, Oct 29, 2023 / 08:00 am
The majority of British Columbians support the right of religiously affiliated health care facilities to reject euthanasia on their premises and to transfer patients requesting medical assistance in dying (MAiD) to other institutions, according to a survey by Angus Reid Institute in collaboration with Cardus.
Fifty-eight percent of British Columbians believe that a patient requesting euthanasia in a religious hospital should be transferred elsewhere, while only 24% think the hospital should be compelled to go against its religious beliefs.
The survey comes in the wake of a recent case where a terminally ill woman in British Columbia was transferred to another facility to receive MAiD after her initial hospital, St. Paul’s Hospital, refused due to its opposition to euthanasia. MAiD advocates are now considering legal challenges to the agreement between the British Columbia provincial government and religious health organizations that allows them to opt out of providing MAiD.
Although most British Columbians supported religious hospitals’ religious rights, the 24% who say hospitals should have to provide MAiD is among the highest in the country.