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Swiss Assisted Suicide on the Rise
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Assisted suicide is becoming a more acceptable endgame strategy in Switzerland, according to a new study released Tuesday. The report, the first one Switzerland has made, discovered that 5 out of every 1,000 deaths in Switzerland are through assisted suicide.

This practice has been legal in Switzerland since 1942, but seems to be increasing, from 43 deaths in 1998 to 300 in 2009. 90 per cent of the cases are over 55 and only 1 per cent are under 35. More of the cases are women, and most of them involve terminal cancer patients, though some are citing depression, and a few cite blindness as their reason for seeking the service.

Such groups as Digitas and EXIT offer counseling, and finally, if it is still desired, a lethal cocktail of drugs, to interested parties.

  
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Bernhard Sutter, the vice president of EXIT, interprets the increase to be a matter of acceptability of the practice, as before such deaths were reported as a matter of being “poisoned.”

Last year, the Swiss government considered legislating tougher laws on how these industries work, but dropped them in favor of respecting personal freedom.

The statistics exclude suicides of tourists, which counts for from 200 to 300 a deaths a year.

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