Member, Mental Disorder as Sole Underlying Medical Condition Advisory Council
Ruth’s undergraduate degree was in philosophy and psychology. The psychology degree contained a course in abnormal psychology, which included a visit to a nearby mental hospital where the professor had been a director/manager. He arranged for the students to converse with several of the patients. After graduation, Ruth had a closer experience of mental illness when her companion in the Hons-Phil-Psych program developed paranoid schizophrenia. Fortunately, her case was successfully treated with electroconvulsive therapy and oral drugs, which she took regularly.
As the person who answers phone calls and emails for the Right to Die Society of Canada, Ruth has had many conversations with people whose desire for death springs from a mental disorder, which has not been managed successfully. She shares reading materials and plans to send an analysis of the new regulations about MAID and mental disorders as soon as they are available.