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My Death, My Decision (MDMD)

My Death, My Decision is a right-to-die campaign organisation that wants to see a more compassionate approach to dying in the UK, including giving people the opportunity to have a medically assisted death if that is their considered choice (assisted dying).

We believe that medically assisted dying should be available to all mentally competent adults with incurable health problems that reduce their quality of life permanently below the level they are willing to accept, provided this is their own persistent request.

Unlike Dignity in Dying (the largest UK assisted dying campaign group), we do not think this option should be restricted to those who are terminally ill with a prognosis of 6 months or less. Many people are left incurably suffering for longer than 6 months. Doctors are not always able to give an accurate 6 month prognosis. Doctor opposition to the 6 month criterion was one of the reasons why recent attempts to introduce assisted dying legislation was rejected. Find out more…

We seek to work with the medical community and legal experts to agree a workable set of safeguards which will protect vulnerable people, while allowing personal autonomy to those who feel their life is complete and no longer wish to endure their worsening conditions, preferring the option of assisted dying.

My Death, My Decision (formerly SOARS, The Society for Old Age Rational Suicide) was established in the UK in 2009, by Michael Irwin, a former GP, Medical Director of the United Nations, and chairman of the Voluntary Euthanasia Society (which has since become Dignity in Dying). MDMD is a member of the World Federation of Right to Die Societies.

Navigating Our Site

On this website you will find lots of information about our point of view, our campaign activities and our response to opposing arguments. There are also sections on what steps you can take for yourself and how you can help us further our campaign.
  • About: Our organisation, its objectives, the right to die campaign in UK and Worldwide
  • Latest News: We collect and comment on stories in the news.
  • Information: A large repository of ideas and documents collecting together discussions of different aspects of the right to die debate. The subsection on Complex Issues Examined provides detailed analysis of particular aspects of the debate and, over time, will grow to discuss all the objections put forward by those opposing a change in the law, with suggestions of how it might be possible to allay objectors’ fears. We hope these pages stimulate discussion and understanding of the issues. We welcome feedback.
  • Personal Stories: A collection of real end-of-life experiences, and the issues they raise.
Many of us would like to have some control over the time and manner of our deaths, should we find ourselves in a condition so hopeless that there is no point in going on…
Thomas Nagel, London Review of Books, 2011
There’s no advantage to ageing. You don’t get wiser, you don’t get more mellow, you don’t see life in a more glowing way. You have to fight your body decaying, and you have less options.
Woody Allen, The Guardian, 2012
It’s important to give people with dementia choice and control over their life whenever possible.
George McNamara, Head of Policy at the Alzheimer’s Society, 2013
Elderly and frail patients should sometimes be allowed to die rather than receive treatments that prolong but do not improve their lives…Society these days is much less familiar with death, and is most reluctant to accept mortality
Dr James Beattie, Cardiologist, 2014
In refusing dying people the right to die with dignity, we fail to demonstrate the compassion that lies at the heart of Christian values.
Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Washington Post, 2016
Only with a legal Euthanasia Bill on the statute books will the many people who find themselves in the same situation as me be able to slip away peacefully in their sleep instead of dreading the night.
Lord Rix, Former actor, cross bench peer and President of Mencap, 2016 in a letter to the Speaker of the House of Lords

Omid's Legal Challenge

MDMD are pleased to offer our support to ‘Omid’ and his team at Bindmans who are challenging the law which denies him the good death he wishes. Omid suffers from Multiple System Atrophy an incurable illness that will cause him suffering, possibly for years, before he dies.

Omid needs your support! Please help raise funds for his legal case through his CrowdJustice page where you can see the latest developments in his case.

New video interview with Omid on You Tube:

Other links: BBC news story. Interview with Omid and his lawyer, Saimo Chahal, on the Victoria Derbyshire programme (scroll to 1hr 38mins)

Posts

  • bbc news logo

Should a right-to-die extend to those with psychiatric conditions?

July 24th, 2017|0 Comments

The BBC report the suicide and background of Canadian Adam Maier-Clayton who took his life in April 2017, aged 27, following a history of psychiatric illness including a condition that left him in extreme pain. [...]

Spectator article on suicide workshops

July 20th, 2017|0 Comments

MDMD could hardly ignore a recent article in the political weekly The Spectator. Its author, Jessica Berens, attended one of Dr Philip Nitschke’s ‘£50 suicide workshops’, along with '80 or so men and women, grey-haired and crepe-soled’ [...]

MDMD Founder Dr Michael Irwin Discusses His End-of-life Plans

July 9th, 2017|0 Comments

The Sunday Times today published an article on the end of life plans of MDMD founder Dr Michael Irwin. (The organisation he founded was the Society for Old Age Rational Suicide, SOARS, which democratically chose [...]

Contact Us

If you agree with our objectives, JOIN US! We need your support.

If you have comments or feedback, please let us know here.

Our banner photo shows the derelict West Pier at Brighton and Hove, chosen as the symbol of SOARS by patron and founder Michael Irwin who describes it as “once a place of great excitement and pleasure”.