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End of Life Choice Bill: The Other Side

The option of requesting assisted dying for people with terminal illness as provisioned by the proposed End of Life Choice Bill has all but divided the country.

There are many attempts from various groups to push for support or otherwise as the bill gets its third reading today and likely to pass its final vote in Parliament.

Amidst the fierce debate, Geneva Healthcare Chief Executive Veronica Manion, and Director Josephine Gagan, voice out the ‘other side’ that has been less pondered on – the choice to live your best life in the face of illness, disability or even death. This means enabling people to make what may be the remainder of their life for some, not merely anticipating death but choosing to embrace a life filled with purpose and passion.

We believe it’s important that we remove any preconceived ideas about what this [bill] means for people. Geneva Healthcare looks after people with injuries or disability or aged care people around New Zealand… we basically just want them to live their best life they can in a safe, clinical, community forum,” says Veronica Manion, Geneva Healthcare Chief Executive, during her recent interview with Kerre McIvor of Newstalk ZB.

What we hope is that people understand the services that are out there and that these services are about supporting you to live your best life whatever that may be for you as an individual[These services are] funded by the Ministry of Health,’ says Josephine Gagan, Geneva Healthcare Director. “Ensuring peoples’ dignity and making sure that people have full consent… making sure people are fully aware of what the options are, that choice and freedom for individuals, I think need to be at the forefront of decision that we’re making,” adds Josephine.

The End of Life Choice Bill, introduced to the House by ACT New Zealand MP David Seymour, seeks to give eligible people with a terminal illness and less than six months left to live, the option of requesting assisted dying. “It all comes down to consent, and making sure that people are eligible for the bill, and that the bill is written so it doesn’t take advantage of anyone who is vulnerable,” adds Veronica.

“At Geneva, we are committed to helping people to live fully and improve their quality of life in their journey through illness or disability. We want to spread the word about the services we provide to support people to live the way they wish to,” concludes Veronica.

To listen to the full interview, please click here.

About Geneva Healthcare

We are New Zealand’s trusted experts in aged care, illness, injury and disability support.Since 1996, we’ve been supporting New Zealanders to live their best life and thrive by keeping well, living independently and staying connected with their community. We are also the industry’s specialists in Temporary Staffing and Permanent Recruitment services that support healthcare facilities nationwide and overseas with reliable and quality staffing solutions.With a highly trained, multicultural workforce and offices nationwide, we are a leading force in the industry known for creativity and technology driven innovative solutions that enable us to be more responsive in the delivery of high quality healthcare and recruitment services.


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