Colombian Woman Has ALS – It’s Not Terminal But She Chose To Die By Euthanasia

A woman from Colombia has amyotrophic lateral sclerosis or ALS, and she can no longer walk independently. She decided to die by euthanasia this Sunday, Oct. 10.

Know The Woman’s Story 

NBC News identified the woman as 51-year-old Martha Sepúlveda Campo, and ALS, a degenerative disease, affected her mobility after being diagnosed in 2019. NBC News noted that Sepúlveda had an interview with the Colombian television network Noticias Caracol where she said that on her spiritual level, she is calm about what will be happening to her this Sunday.

NBC News quoted Sepúlveda on her decision during her interview with Noticias Caracol, saying, “God does not want to see me suffer, and I believe that no one, no parent wants to see their children suffer.” She added that as her symptoms got worse, she realized the best thing to happen was to rest.

The First Case In Colombia 

This is the first time that a patient with a non-terminal illness will receive euthanasia in Colombia. Colombia was the first country in Latin America to decriminalize euthanasia, but it was only allowed in cases of a terminal illness. However, this year on July 22, the Colombian Constitutional Court expanded the right regarding euthanasia. It now allows resorting to such procedure provided that the patient suffers from intense physical or mental suffering from bodily injuries or serious and incurable diseases.

Four days after the expansion, Sepúlveda applied for a permit. It was granted on Aug. 6.

Colombian Woman Has ALS – It’s Not Terminal But She Chose To Die By Euthanasia
Image Credit: Noticias Caracol/Youtube screencap

Her Family Is Very Supportive 

Despite the unique wish of Sepúlveda, her eleven siblings and her son supported her decision. NBC News shared that during the interview of her son, Federico Redondo Sepúlveda, with Noticias Caracol, he said that he needs her mother and he wants her with him, but he sees her condition and noted that she no longer lives as she only survives now.

Her mother, however, still wrestles with the idea, but Sepúlveda believes her mom understands deep down.