Vincent Lambert, the man who has been at the center of a years-long debate over assisted dying, has died at the age of 42.
Lambert had spent over a decade in a vegetative state after a brutal traffic accident left him completely paralyzed and unable to communicate. Since then, his deeply religious parents have been campaigning to keep him alive, while doctors continued to insist that he was not going to get any better and should be allowed to die.
Eventually, in 2013, physicians decided that treatment should start to be withdrawn from Lambert. This decision was made in agreement with Vincent’s wife, Rachel. However, the medics were forced to reinstate treatment after a court appeal was lodged by Vincent’s parents in order to keep their son alive. The parents, Pierre and Viviane sought to move him to a specialist facility.
The case was ruled upon by the French courts and even went as high as the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR), which sided with the medical team’s decision to remove life-sustaining treatment. However, in a shock move taken by the United Nations Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, the ECHR and the French judiciary were ordered to halt their rulings until a full investigation had been carried out into Vincent’s condition.
At that time, the UN effectively ordered doctors to continue treatment and keep him alive. The final blow, however, came on July 2 when France’s highest court, the Cour de Cassation, overruled the UN’s appeal. At this point, Vincent’s parents were left with no other options and doctors began removing the tubes supplying him with food and water. Nine days later, Vincent died.
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Source: Christian Headlines