Switzerland legalises assisted suicide capsule

Switzerland legalises ‘Sarco’ assisted suicide capsule.

Euthanasia or assisted suicide is legal already in Switzerland. The country has taken one step further and has now approved the use of an assisted suicide capsule. The Sarco capsule or machine was designed by Nitschke and Alexander Bannink.

The designers hope that their assisted suicide machine with allow people to die in a dignified manner. The person who wants to die is placed inside the capsule. Once activated the capsule makes the person fall to sleep where they then die painlessly. The machine uses nitrogen to help the person die without pain.

The person wanting to die can activate the machine using a button inside the capsule. If the person is paralysed, then they can activate the machine by just blinking. The capsule can be made with a 3D printer so can be used around the world.

Once activated the machine sucks out oxygen from the air until only 1 per cent remains. The patient will start to lose consciousness within seconds of the process being started. Death will occur within 5 to 10 minutes and will be painless.

Speaking to swissinfo.ch inventor Nitschke said: “there is no panic and no feeling of suffocation”. The death is said to be peaceful.

The capsule will be available for use from 2022 in Switzerland for assisted suicide. At the moment the design is still in its prototype stage. In future, the machine will allow people to communicate from inside the capsule with the outside world. The designers also plan on recording the patient’s consent so no doctor will be needed to supervise the death.

Version number three is being manufactured in the Netherlands and this will be used i Switzerland from next year. The new version will look less like a spaceship.

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Written by

Alex Glenn

Originally from the UK, Alex is based in Almeria and is a web reporter for The Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news. Got a news story you want to share? Then get in touch at [email protected]


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