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A review board of 13 medical and legal experts will review assisted suicide-euthanasia applications after the fact to ensure compliance with the law.
New South Wales rejected such a bill in 2017, as did the national parliament in 2016, and that of Tasmania in 2013.
Australia's Northern Territory legalized assisted suicide in 1995, but the national parliament overturned the law two years later.
“We anticipate that once the scheme has been in place for some time, we’ll see between 100 and 150 patients access this scheme every year,” Mikakos told the ABC.
“In the first year, we do expect the number to be quite modest — maybe only as low as a dozen people,” she added.
“The Andrews government has set in motion a regime which will legitimise suicide for our most vulnerable community members, devalue palliative care and pressure doctors into abandoning their medical ethic of first do no harm,” she said.
While the bill was being considered in 2017, Bishop Peter Stasiuk of the Ukrainian Eparchy of Saints Peter and Paul of Melbourne said support of euthanasia and assisted suicide is “motivated by a false sense of compassion.” He wrote in a pastoral letter that “Endorsing suicide as a solution to pain or suffering sends the wrong message, especially to the young.
According to The Australian, pro-life supporters held a vigil outside Parliament House in Melbourne June 18.
Denise Cameron, president of Pro-life Victoria, said the law is still widely opposed by those in the medical field.
The bishops said the legislation has been inappropriately labeled as a compassionate response to terminal illness.
They pointed to Pope Francis, who has characterized euthanasia as a feature of a “throw-away culture.” “Francis calls us to follow Christ by accompanying people with compassion, sharing hope not fear.