Euthanasia Rates Escalating: Kills One a Day in Belgium, Five a Day in Netherlands

BRUSSELS/AMSTERDAM, April 22, 2005 ( - Euthanasia cases are on the rise since their legalization in Belgium in 2002 - from approximately 20 per month in 2002 to 30 per month now, according to a report from a government group that regulates the practice. The Netherlands has also seen a rise in euthanasia cases, from 1815 in 2003 to 1,886 last year, as reported by the country's health ministry Thursday.

When euthanasia was legalized in 2002, Belgium set up the Federal Control and Evaluation Commission for Euthanasia. The group released a report Thursday, revealing that, over the first 15 months after legalization, there were 259 deaths from euthanasia, or 20 per month. The latest figures show the rate has risen to 30 per month. Eighty percent of euthanasia deaths are reportedly from Dutch-speaking Flanders, with the remainder from French-speaking Wallonia.


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