Alliance VITA denounces the inappropriate endorsement of euthanasia by French complementary health insurance companies and calls upon their duty of discretion in view of the potential conflict of interest.
On September 7, 2022, the 43rd Congress of the “Mutualité Française” (French Complementary Health Insurance Companies) held a forum entitled “Choosing your end-of-life: the ultimate freedom?” Participants included Jean-Luc Romero, the honorary president of ADMD, a Right-To-Die association, François DAMAS, the head of ICU and member of the ethics committee of the Citadelle regional hospital in Liège, Belgium, and Matthias SAVIGNAC, the President of the national complementary insurance company for teachers, the “MGEN” (Mutuelle Générale de l’Éducation Nationale).
Previously in July, an IFOP survey entitled “Views on the End-of-life in France” was conducted for the MGEN which attested position advocating euthanasia in an End-of-Life Manifesto. This manifesto is similar to the appeal for “active assistance in dying” made by Thierry Beaudet, MGEN’s former President. Thierry Beaudet now President of the “EESC”, (Economic and Social and Environmental Council), is responsible for organizing the upcoming citizens’ debates on the end-of-life.
While these health insurance companies claim to have an essential role in healthcare, and in contributing to the management of old age and autonomy, questions are being raised by their open endorsement of euthanasia or assisted suicide, under the pretext of a “right to choose a dignified end-of-life”.
Members pay their healthcare insurance to be sure that their healthcare costs will be covered, and this becomes crucial when they are most vulnerable, whether they are elderly, sick or at the end-of-life. Even the title of this 43rd Congress which advocates aid in dying is incompatible with mutual aid and solidarity, and undermines the trust between caregivers and patients, which is founded on the ban to kill.
Isn’t it obvious that this so-called “freedom” to choose death, promoted by some public health authorities, inevitably becomes the “duty to die” for the most vulnerable, the poorest, and the most secluded individuals?
Alliance VITA spokesman’s Tugdual Derville declares: “Beyond the standpoint in favor of dignity and individual freedom, we cannot help but wonder how much money insurance companies would save if euthanasia became legalized. The confusion and worry that such speeches cause for their members should not be underestimated. At a time when the healthcare system has undergone upheavals, coupled with an obvious conflict of interest, insurance companies should consider their duty of discretion on the end-of-life issue as an obligation. »
This is why Alliance VITA is calling on the government to ensure that organizations involved in social protection maintain a neutral stance on this very sensitive issue and that the EESC, as organizer of the public debates on the end-of-life, remain impartial.