Since euthanasia was legalized in Belgium in 2002, after 21,000 declared cases (it is considered that there are a third more than doctors do not bother to declare) only 2 have reached the courts, as the Ghent Report of 2021 points out , only one – was denounced by the “control” commission (which actually controls almost nothing) and only because it was scandalized on Australian television. The other has been kicking since 2010, is promoted by the family of the euthanasia, Tine Lys and is now returning to court.
If only 2 of 21,000 cases of caused death reach the courts, are we to think that there is much control or rather than Is it a riot?
This single case concerns the April 2010 euthanasia in Dendermonde of Tine Nys, a 38-year-old woman with a disastrous emotional life. A euthanasiating psychiatrist ruled that she had autism and was only a few months old and was euthanized for “psychic suffering” by Dr. Joris Van Hove (involved in other problems with the law), with the favorable opinion of a general practitioner and the psychiatrist. That year Belgium euthanized 954 of its patients; In 2019 she euthanized 2,357, almost triple.
She asked to be killed due to a sentimental disappointment
The family assures that Tine did not meet the requirements to be euthanized and that the psychiatrist falsely diagnosed her as autistic in order to euthanize her. At 38 years old, Tine insistently asked to be killed but, according to the family, not because of a “serious and incurable disorder” as required by law but because of failed romantic relationships.
Although she had emotional and behavioral problems and had attempted suicide in 1997, she had improved a lot and had not seen a psychiatrist for 15 years until she decided to commit suicide and she looked for her 3 doctors to sign the order as it was.
There was already a first trial in Ghent in 2018, in which the three doctors were acquitted. But the family appealed to a court of cassation, which ruled that Dr. Van Hove should be tried again because his verdict was not well argued, and some sordid details about the euthanasiator were released during that trial. He had been tried before for drunk driving, forgery (he has papers according to which he would own 15 buildings in various roles) and in 2017 he was convicted of sexually abusing young male patients, according to MercatorNet’s digital Bioedge.
Van Hove admitted that he had never performed euthanasia for psychological suffering before, that in fact he had not completed his training as a euthanasiator and that he did not administer the lethal injection correctly. Now the trial is being held again, with statements from witnesses and Van Hove himself. , who has stated that “in each consultation Tine asked for euthanasia, she clung to it because nothing else worked. I know she was in treatment and her autism spectrum disorder was being treated. ”He insists that since her first meeting in December 2009 (she was killed just 4 months after her)“ she talked about euthanasia and insisted on it. I have always been convinced that the euthanasia was justified in her case.
Was he really autistic? And what alternatives were considered?
The same have been stated by the other two doctors who approved euthanasia, the psychiatrist Lieve Thienpont and the general practitioner Frank De Greef. The psychiatrist was the one who diagnosed the alleged autistic disorder. No other psychiatrist confirmed it, examined her or proposed alternatives.
In February 2020 the psychiatrist said that the 10 years of judicial process (we insist, the only one in Belgium) have affected her private life: “obviously that took away a large part of my quality of life and my energy, which I would rather have spent on other things “.
The psychiatrist assures that” Tine was someone who was really suffering deeply psychologically. ” The woman had aborted, she had been a prostitute and had been away from her family for years.
But is that enough to facilitate suicide for a suicide? Thienpont emphasizes that she will continue to work for the ‘right to euthanasia’ for those with “unbearable” psychological suffering.
In fact, she chairs an association that is dedicated to that, to psychologically analyze those who request euthanasia … and to make it easy for them. Analyzing the case, the first in court after eliminating 21,000 Belgian patients with this method, many jurists pointed out that after so many years, in fact, it is still not clear what crime is committed by doctors who do euthanasia in breach of the conditions or what their penalties or punishments are.
Analyzing the case, the first in court after eliminating 21,000 Belgian patients with this method, many jurists pointed out that after so many years, in fact, it is still not clear what crime is committed by doctors who do euthanasia in breach of the conditions or what their penalties or punishments are.
Express euthanasia and without offering alternatives
For their part, the family has denounced that Tine had been diagnosed with autism only 2 months before and that before 15 years had passed without receiving any treatment. Family argues that no further avenues of therapy were explored.
Belgian law allows euthanasia after just a month after the consultation. The family also tried to dissuade Tine, but without avail by her part. Her sister Sophie at first thought that with the novel diagnosis of autism they could do many things, face treatments, etc … “We were convinced that she was not going to get a third signature. She had such a zest for life and strength to (continue) living”. “People can get better after hitting rock bottom and rebuilding their lives, “said Sophie. But Tine could not rebuild anything because a few months later the same doctor who diagnosed her with autism signed the permission to euthanize her and eliminate her with a lethal injection.
The family also gave sordid details of how Tine was euthanized. The euthanasiator had forgotten to bring plasters and asked her father to hold the needle already stuck in her arm. Then he told them if they wanted to hear through her stethoscope that her heart was no longer beating. “Tine was not finished. We are saddened that she was not given professional care between her request for euthanasia and her death. The professionals did not give her the help that she needed, they only gave her help to die, family denounced.
And the “control” Commission?
Belgium has a Euthanasia Control Commission, which actually acts to shield euthanasiators, not to protect the sick.
The Commission analyzes the cases a posteriori (with the applicant already dead) and in the case of Tine they gave him an OK.
The family and the prosecution do not think the same.
The Belgian Euthanasia Commission has by law: – 8 doctors (it is understood that all of them related to euthanasia; the anti-euthanasia do not want to be part of it)
– 4 legal experts
– 4 experts in caring for incurable patients
To send a problematic case to the Prosecutor’s Office, at least 11 of the 15 members must vote in favor.
This has only happened once in 18 years, the case uncovered by Australian TV on its Dateline program. In fact, even if the 8 non-medical experts, scandalized by a case, wanted to elevate it to the Prosecutor’s Office, the 8 doctors could block it … which is what it is about. Pro-euthanasia doctors cover each other like this.
In the 2018 report, the Commission admits that there was a scandalous case of a patient eliminated without his request; 9 members wanted to take the case to the Prosecutor’s Office, 7 members opposed it. Not reaching 11 out of 15, the Commission approved the case, filed it and the Prosecutor’s Office did nothing.
Forms filled in any way
The Belgian Euthanasia Commission does not investigate or send detectives or interview suspects or seek in any way to ensure that no one coerces, subtle or brutal, the elderly, sick or depressed … The Commission only receives forms and produces annual reports repeating that, after 21,000 euthanasia, everyone is happy. ‘No problem’. How many more vulnerable people have been euthanized taking advantage of their mental or emotional weakness?
That is why the case of Tine Nys is so annoying: it puts light where there are, above all, sealed envelopes and euthanasiators who cover up.