Health Care

French senators reject a bill on sedating terminal patients

Female doctor holding application form while consulting patient

Female doctor holding application form while consulting patient

France's senate has voted against a bill allowing the sedation of terminally ill patients, fearing it would lead to allowing euthanasia, which is illegal in the country.

Senators in Paris rejected the law by a vote of 196-87.

The measure, approved by the lower house of parliament in March, aimed to let doctors keep terminally ill patients sedated until death comes.

Since both houses disagree, the bill will have to make its way again through the legislative process, which could take months. In the end, the lower house has the final say.

The bill would also force doctors to follow end-of-life instructions from patients regarding terminal sedation and stopping treatments if they agree the practices wouldn't improve their condition. French doctors currently do not have to follow those instructions.