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Argentina: Senate Passes Bill Legalizing Abortion

(Jan. 7, 2021) On December 30, 2020, Argentina’s Senate passed a bill legalizing abortion until the 14th week of pregnancy. The vote, which took place after a 12-hour debate, saw 38 senators supporting the bill, 29 opposing it, and one abstaining. The new law establishes the conditions under which a woman may voluntarily terminate a […]

Italy: New Law Addresses Violence against Health and Socio-Health Professionals

(Sept. 25, 2020) Italy recently enacted a law to address violence against health and “socio-health” professionals in the performance of their duties. Law No. 113 of August 14, 2020, which took effect on September 24, 2020, applies to those health professionals regulated under Law No. 3 of January 11, 2018, including doctors-surgeons (medici-chirurghi), dentists, veterinarians, […]

South Korea: Government Orders Striking Doctors-in-Training to Return to Work

(Sept. 24, 2020) On August 26, 2020, five days after thousands of doctors in South Korea launched a nationwide strike, the Ministry of Health and Welfare (MOHW) ordered striking doctors-in-training in the greater Seoul area to return to work, citing concerns over spiking coronavirus cases. The Medical Service Act stipulates that the minister, or related […]

Turkey: New Law Imposes Harsher Penalties for Violence Against Health Care Workers

(Apr. 28, 2020) On April 15, 2020, Turkey’s Parliament passed Law No. 7243 introducing harsher penalties for certain crimes committed against health care workers and their assistants. (Law No. 7243, art. 28.) Versions of the so-called “violence in health care” law had long been proposed by medical professional organizations and others in reaction to the high […]

Italy: Criminal Code Provision Outlawing Assisted Suicide Ruled Unconstitutional

(Jan. 7, 2020) On November 22, 2019, the Italian Constitutional Court declared that application of article 580 of the Penal Code penalizing assisted suicide is unconstitutional in certain circumstances. (Decision No. 242 of November 22, 2019 (the Decision) (in Italian).) Background of the Case The case was referred to the Constitutional Court by the Court of […]

UAE: Court Orders Doctors to Pay Blood Money to Patient’s Family

(Apr. 16, 2019) On March 29, 2019, the United Arab Emirates Federal Supreme Court in Abu Dhabi upheld the rulings of a criminal court of first instance and an appellate court to grant the family of a deceased patient the right to receive blood money. The Federal Supreme Court issued a decision ordering two Asian […]

Israel: Knesset Passes Medical Tourism Legislation

(Sept. 25, 2018) On July 18, 2018, the Knesset (Israel’s Parliament) approved the Medical Tourism Law, 5778-2018 (SEFER HAHUKIM [SH] 5778 No. 2750 p. 963, Ministry of Justice website (in Hebrew; click on issue No. 2750). The Law regulates the medical tourism industry in Israel. Among other things, it introduces registration requirements for medical tourism […]

Germany: Proposed Amendment to the Criminal Code Concerning Advertising Services for Abortion

(Mar. 19, 2018) On February 22, 2018, the German Bundestag (Parliament) debated draft acts introduced by three parliamentary groups concerning a provision in the Criminal Code that penalizes advertising services for abortion. The amendments would either abolish the provision or restrict its scope to cover only grossly offensive advertising. (Gesetzentwurf der Fraktion BÜNDNIS 90/DIE GRÜNEN, […]

Brazil: New Rules Update the Criteria to Define Brain Death

(Dec. 15, 2017) On December 12, 2017, the Brazilian Federal Council of Medicine (Conselho Federal de Medicina, CFM) updated the criteria for the definition of brain death, which can now be diagnosed by more specialists in addition to neurologists. The new criteria established in Resolution CFM No. 2,173/17 (not yet available online) meets the requirements […]