Lecretia Seales was unsuccessful in seeking a landmark High Court ruling to allow her doctor to help her die without criminal prosecution.
Justice David Collins released his judgment at 3pm which rejected her bid and said only Parliament can give her what she wanted.
"The complex legal, philosophical, moral and clinical issues raised by Ms Seales' proceedings can only be addressed by Parliament passing legislation to amend the effect of the Crimes Act.
"Although Ms Seales has not obtained the outcomes she sought, she has selflessly provided a forum to clarify important aspects of New Zealand law."
Regardless of the result of the ruling, Ms Seales previously told the Herald said she would be proud if her court case prompted wider legislative change. "I'm reasonably confident that I won't be able to see it through to the end. But if I can get it started, that would make me happy."
The assisted suicide (euthanasia) issue is one of individual rights: like the right to speak ones mind freely, the right to marry the person of ones choice, or the right to worship. By exercising such rights no-one else is harmed and frankly it is no-one else’s business what one does with one’s life.
Had she asked me one day to assist her to die I would have done so willingly, because what else is one to do when faced with the dying wish of ones darling. I would have found the wherewithal to end her life and would not have cared a fig for the law, the courts, the wishes of any other human being or any outcome such as imprisonment that might have been imposed on me by an ignorant and inhumane society. For there can be no greater freedom than the right to decide the manner and time of our own death and no greater responsibility or privilege than to render assistance if that is what is demanded.
As it was she never asked me, so it fell to me, with the assistance of Waiheke's wonderful District Nurses, doctor, family and friends, to make sure she was as comfortable and pain free as possible at home as she became increasingly paralysed and her body and spirit reconciled themselves to the inevitable.
For myself I am quite sure that, faced with the certainly of death in circumstances where life would become intolerable to me, I would end my life by my own hand. I would do it with the assistance of the euthanasia clinics in Switzerland or, more likely, make sure I had the tools on hand to decide the hour and manner of my passing. That is what a life of self responsibility and individual freedom ultimately means.
Such a choice may not be available either through lack of money or circumstance. Nevertheless, in a humane world, it should be possible to assist a dying person fulfil their final wish without the threat of prosecution and imprisonment. Other countries have found a way. Lecretia has ensured the path is lit. All we have to do is follow it.