ACTOR Dirk Bogarde became an advocate for euthanasia after his experiences in Normandy. One time the Jeep ahead hit a mine and a mortally wounded occupant lay on the ground pleading with his unseeing eyes and one remaining limb, an outstretched arm, to be killed. As Dirk fumbled attempting to load his pistol another officer had "taken care of things". There were few field hospitals and Dirk saw many soldiers "taken care of".

Today patients can be treated quite effectively for even very serious illness over many years.

However if a time comes where procedures are not considered favourable by the patient or medical knowledge has reached the end, what next?

Deteriorating health, pain and infirmity are controlled to some degree (could LSD be better?) but what if life becomes intolerable?

Different people have different tolerances and where there is hope they will usually opt for life... but.

What if their tenacity for life is done, what next?

Perhaps an undignified and painful journey to their own inevitable demise, a more direct trip via Dignitas, or the legal right for assisted dying in the UK when the patient knows their time is right?

Tom Scaife,

Manor Drive,