Musician goes fundraising to end her own life

Elizabeth Fischer, 68, a prominent performer among Vancouver’s avant-garde, went crowd-funding when she was diagnosed with terminal lung cancer.

With the money raised, she took an Iceland vacation with two friends before flying to Zurich to end it all at Dignitas.

elizabeth fischer

Full story and interview here.

It calls to mind the sad decision six years ago of the British conductor Edward Downes and his wife, Joan, to end their lives at the Swiss mortuary.

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  • In a gerontology department of a general hospital, the doctors deal with and treat a whole range of problems, including inevitably sometimes the death of a patient. At Dignitas the doctors concern themselves only with the death of their ‘patient’. This worries me a great deal. Swiss mortuary indeed.

    • Because the “patients” at Dignitas only expect (and desire) one outcome – their death. If they had any expectation that they could continue with their life in something less than distressing agony, they would presumably be somewhere other than Dignitas.

      • Yes, obviously, but it still worries me that a doctor devotes himself entirely to helping people taking their life and doesnt practice any of the life-enhancing skills that make a doctor whole.

        • If you’re suffering with a terminal illness it should absolutely be your own choice to have help in ending your life,it’s a shame our politicians can’t seem to understand that this should be a right.

          • My comment that I’m worried that doctors specialise in death doesnt contradict the right that you say is a fundamental one. What I said was that I am worried when it takes place in an institution whose sole purpose is to terminate life. As a society we must find a way for this to be possible within the realm of a general hospital, and not by a Dr Death who does nothing else in a place where no one comes back out alive. At the moment most countries are shirking this responsibility and by the method it has chosen, so too has Switzerland.

  • Mark my words: Any day now we will see a “Konzept” opera production of Aïda or Tristan und Isolde set in a Swiss mortuary with the lovers ending their lives together with “assistance.”

  • @Ray Richardson — you said: “As a society we must find a way for this to be possible within the realm of a general hospital, and not by a Dr Death who does nothing else in a place where no one comes back out alive.”

    Really? If you had to go to that same hospital for an operation, would you feel comfortable knowing that the death ward was just a few doors down the hall? I certainly would not!

    • I’m sorry you’re so squeamish, but it’s something we all must face. And even when you’ve sent the poor sods off to Dr Death’s establisment , in any hospital where you’re having your operation ( other than a private one where you have your own room) , the patient in the next bed to you could die whilst you’re there. Dear, dear how would you cope with that?

      • I would be more concerned about a mixup in the medical records, sending me off to the wrong destination after being sedated. Of course, this also happens occasionally today.

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