Canada's Parliament has adopted a law allowing medically-assisted suicide for the terminally ill, brushing aside critics who wanted the legislation to cover people with degenerative diseases. On Friday, after weeks of political wrangling, the upper Senate chamber voted in favor of a law which makes Canada one of the few nations where doctors can legally help sick people die.
Some Senators complained the scope of the law, initially passed by the House of Commons elected chamber was too narrow and should not be restricted to only those facing imminent death.
The patient must seek a doctor's help for the assisted suicide.
The law, drafted after Canada's Supreme Court last year overturned a ban on physician-assisted suicide, must receive formal approval from Governor General David Johnston, the acting head of state. That process is a formality, Daily Mail reports.
The Supreme Court ruling covered willing adults facing intolerable physical or psychological suffering from a severe and incurable medical condition.
The Liberal government, though, narrowed the scope of the legislation to cover only those people whose death was reasonably foreseeable.
Canada's Justice Minister Jody Wilson-Raybould and Health Minister Jane Philpott said the bill struck 'the right balance between personal autonomy for those seeking access to medically assisted dying and protecting the vulnerable,' according to BBC News.