Life matters

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I am following, with great interest, the debate on assisted dying.

It has brought to mind the conversation I had several decades ago with a friend who was the widely respected medical superintendent of a hospital which specialised in the treatment of patients suffering from tuberculosis.

He told me that, as a young student, he was taught to abide by the principle: “Thou shalt not kill but needst not strive officiously to keep alive.”

I do not profess to be knowledgeable on the subject but I get the impression that there are times when, by the use of artificial means, we tend to prolong a life which is little more than a miserable existence when it would be kinder to the patient and more morally upright to let nature take its course.

Graham H Speirs

Dirleton Avenue

North Berwick

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