J Med Ethics 33:278 doi:10.1136/jme.2006.016923
  • Law, ethics and medicine

A new legal frame for end of life in France

  1. C Manaouil,
  2. M Gignon,
  3. M Decourcelle,
  4. O Jardé
  1. Consultation of Forensic Medicine, Amiens, France
  1. Correspondence to:
 C Manaouil
 University Hospital of Amiens, CHU, Place Victor Pauchet 80054 Amiens cedex 1, France;manaouil.cecile{at}

    After an important public debate, the law of 22 April 2005 on the rights of the patient and on the end of life has been voted in, in France.1 It gives us an alternative to the Dutch euthanasia model.2 The purpose of this law is to develop palliative care (organised with a specialised palliative unit, development of the networks of care and valuation of the acts of palliative care), to form healthcare professionals for terminally ill patients, to make them more sensitive to such situations and, finally, also to inform public opinion and jurists. Decrees of application were published on 7 February 2006.

    From now on, a collective and transparent procedure is compulsory when it requires limiting or interrupting …