Memorandum by The George House Trust
We are the largest HIV care and support charity
in the North West of England and work with around 1400 people
living with and affected by HIV across the region.
Although the death rate from HIV is less than
one third of the level eight years ago because of the high level
of effectiveness of the latest combination drug treatments (in
2003 deaths among people with HIV in the North West were 30 as
opposed to 98 in 1995), some of our service users do have concerns
around their own deaths.
One concern is around pain control and we therefore
welcome the proposed right to pain relief from a palliative care
specialist contained in sections 3 and 15 of the draft Bill.
The Bill's fundamental purpose, to provide a
right for terminally ill people who are suffering unbearably to
have medical assistance to die if they persistently request this,
is one that some of our service users would appreciate. We therefore
support this Bill to provide people with this choice, should they
21 July 2004