Act Now: Ask your GP to vote in favour of assisted dying in the RCGP survey


November 12th, 2019

The Royal College of General Practitioners (RCGP) has just launched a survey on assisted dying and may support reforming the law if enough GPs support changing their stance. Earlier this year, when the Royal College of Physicians dropped their opposition to assisted dying, our politicians took note.

Humanist Society Scotland is asking all of its members and supporters to ask their GPs to vote in favour of assisted dying in the RCGP survey. 

Currently more than one person a week travels from the UK to Switzerland in order to end their life. Many others are blocked from taking this decision because they can’t afford it, they are too unwell to travel, or they don’t wish to end their life early whilst they are still fit to travel. Instead, some of these people end their lives in circumstances that are far too often painful and traumatic.

The only way to ensure that every Scottish citizen has the legal right to a peaceful, compassionate, and dignified death, is through the provision of legislation that allows people who are incurably suffering or terminally ill to choose an assisted death.

The RCGP last surveyed its 53,000 members on what its stance should be on assisted dying in 2013. RCGP members voted that the College should not change its stance, so its current position is that it is opposed to any change in the law on assisted dying. Will you write to your GP and ask them to support changing the RCGP’s stance in support of assisted dying?

We have drafted a template letter you can send, although we note it is always better to personalise your responses. Find your GP practice on this NHS website

Dear Dr _____,

The Royal College of General Practitioners (RCGP) is surveying its members on the topic of assisted dying. 

I hope you don’t mind me writing to you, but as your patient, it is vital that I can have an open and honest conversation with you about death, including the implications of any incurable illnesses, my quality of life, available treatment such as palliative care, and whether I am informed about the realities of an assisted death abroad. 

I’m asking you to support legal, compassionate, and safeguarded assisted dying for both the terminally ill and incurably suffering, like nearly 90% of the public agree we should. One person a week, despite palliative care, is now forced to travel from the UK to end their life abroad, and I don’t think this is right. 

Please vote to support the legalisation of assisted dying in the RCGP’s poll!

Yours sincerely,



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