The working party on euthanasia set up by the British Medical Association produced its report in 1988 (1). The first of its terms of reference was 'to examine the ethical problems relating to euthanasia, terminal illness, and suicide' and as far as active voluntary euthanasia (AVE) is concerned it failed conspicuously to do its job. The purpose of this article is not to restate the case for AVE but to examine the reason for the failure. (Figures in square brackets refer to sections in the report.)
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