This articles reviews empirical studies of the results of legalization of euthanasia and assisted suicide in the Netherlands and Oregon. It points that after reviewing thousands of cases the legal system does not detect criminal activity. The evidence shows legalization and reporting shape physician behavior. The analysis is limited by classification bias, where a physician can call a death treatment of symptoms or euthanasia, and by small numbers. Because of the limitations of the legal system and empirical studies, the author argues that the main purpose of legalization of euthanasia and assisted suicide should be to assure optimal end-of-life care.
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/jackson_pickett/1/