With her motor neurone disease getting worse, Gina decides to take matters into her own hands and plans to seek assisted suicide in Switzerland (see also the episode Moondance). The main focus of the episode Taking liberties (BBC1, October 3rd 2006; TRILT identifier 005C67BF) is her completion of necessary arrangements at Holby. These include collecting together her favourite mementoes from her marriage to Elliott and persuading Connie to help her with the plans. There are many sections of this episode where this theme is developed, including 11:38-12:31, 14:18-16:51, 23:14-24:24, 31:55-32:25, 33:20-34:33, 42:43-44:38 and 53:52-56:03. The most helpful clips for raising the issues are the first two listed, which deal with the motivations for going to Switzerland, and the final clip where Gina and Connie fill in the online application form accompanied by a recording of Gina’s farewell message to Elliott. The section from 42:43 where Elliott confides in Connie that he also seeks a swift end to Gina’s suffering may also be helpful.
As is so often the case with this series, there are two further subplots with a bioethical theme. One involves Dr Joseph Byrne prescribing himself medication, but no isolated clips from this episode would really help in explaining the situation. Of greater potential, however, are the revelations that some of the medicines being provided from the hospital pharmacy are counterfeit. This storyline reflects a genuine concern that there are fake medicines finding their way into the legitimate supply lines in the UK and elsewhere (see, for example, BBC news report Fake medicines ‘a growing menace’). Clips discussing this theme are at 24:55-25:35, 41:03-41:36 and 51:17-51:50.