In homes across the world, millions of victims are suffering from fatal and terminal illnesses.With death knocking on their door, should these people have to endure pain and misery knowing what is to come? The answers to these questions are very controversial. Furthermore, there is a greater question to be answered—should these people have the right and option to end the relentless pain and agony through physician assisted death? Physician-Assisted Suicide PAS is highly contentious because it induces conflict of several moral and ethical questions such as who is the true director of our lives. Is suicide an individual choice and should the highest priority to humans be alleviating pain or do we suffer for a purpose? Is suicide a purely
However, there is immense criticism on the morality of the process, especially because the process denies a patient the right to natural death. The critics of the assisted suicide procedure argue that such a process devalues human life and tends to promote suicide as an alternative to personal suffering. By claiming that the procedure allows terminally ill patients to initiate dignity at death is flawed because the purpose of medical profession is to ensure a dignified life. According to the physicians’ code of ethics and the Hippocratic Oath, physicians are not allowed to do harm to their patients because their role is to allow a dignified health for members of the community. Consequently, legalization of Physician Assisted suicide that requires physicians to assist the patients to die is against their medical ethics. Quill, Cassel, & Meier (2010) provide that although the patients voluntarily ask the medical practitioners to assist in the process, the practitioners have a role to advise the patients against such a procedure. Besides, such a premise is bound to raise awareness of suicide as an alternative to suffering within the public domain, which may encourage such behavior among healthy members of the community that feel that they enjoy the freedom to make such a decision. On this basis, the negative moral implication of assisted suicide makes its legalization unworthy in the
1. (problem – PAS): In today’s society, Physician Assisted Suicide is one of the most questionable and debatable issues. Many people feel that it is wrong for people to ask their doctor to help them end their life; while others feel it is their right to choose between the right to life and the right to death. “Suffering has always been a part of human existence.” (PAS) “Physicians have no similar duty to provide actions, such as assistance in suicide, simply because they have been requested by patients. In deciding how to respond to patients ' requests, physicians should use their judgment about the medical appropriateness of the request.” (Bernat, JL) Physician Assisted Suicide differs from withholding or discontinuing medical treatment, it consists of doctors providing a competent patient with a prescription for medication to aid in the use to end their life.
There are several ethical dilemmas that the mental health professionals that are working as a team will face including “ensuring that the client has given informed consent, maintaining client confidentiality, and involving professionals, paraprofessionals, and family in appropriate coordinated processes that benefit the client” (Paproski & Haverkamp, 2000, p.96).
As humans, we have the right to life. In Canada, in section 7 of our Charter of Rights and Freedoms, Canadians can expect “life, liberty and security of the person.” This means not only to simply exist, but have a minimum quality and value in each of our lives. Dying is the last important, intimate, and personal moment, and this process of dying is part of life. Whether death is a good or bad thing is not the question, as it is obviously inevitable, but as people have the right to attempt to make every event in their life pleasant, so they should have the right to make their dying as pleasant as possible. If this process is already very painful and unpleasant, people should have the right to shorten the unpleasantness. In February of this year, judges declared that the right to life does not mean individuals “cannot ‘waive’ their right to life.” Attempting suicide is not illegal in Canada, but the issue here is for those whose physical handicaps prevent them from doing so, and to allow access to a safe, regulated and painless form of suicide. It is a very difficult, sensitive and much-debated subject which seeks to balance the value of life with personal autonomy. In this essay, I will argue that the philosophical case for pro-euthanasia is more complete than those arguments against it due to the
Thesis: When it comes to the topic of physician-assisted suicide (PAS), some experts believe that an individual should have the option of ending their life in the event that they have been given six months to live with a terminal illness or when the quality of their life has been vastly changed. Where this argument usually ends, however, is on the question whether physician-assisted suicide is medically ethical, would be overly abused to the point where doctors might start killing patients without their consent. Whereas some experts are convinced that just improving palliative care would decrease the need for someone to want to end their life before it happened naturally.
This assignment will discuss a case involving an individual known to me. It centres on the real and contentious issue of the “right to die”, specifically in the context of physician-assisted death. This issue is widely debated in the public eye for two reasons. The first considers under what conditions a person can choose when to die and the second considers if someone ever actually has a ‘right to die’. The following analysis will consider solutions to the ethical dilemma of physician-assisted death through the lens of three ethical theories. It will also take into account the potential influence of an individual’s religious beliefs
In today’s society, suicide, and more controversially, physician assisted suicide, is a hotly debated topic amongst both every day citizens and members of the medical community. The controversial nature of the subject opens up the conversation to scrutinizing the ethics involved. Who can draw the line between morality and immorality on such a delicate subject, between lessening the suffering of a loved one and murder? Is there a moral dissimilarity between letting someone die under your care and killing them? Assuming that PAS suicide is legal under certain circumstances, how stringent need be these circumstances? The patient must be terminally ill to qualify for voluntary physician-assisted suicide, but in the eyes of the non-terminal patients with no physical means to end their life, the ending of their pain through PAS may be worth their death; at what point is the medical staff disregarding a patient’s autonomy? Due to the variability of answers to these questions, the debate over physician-assisted suicide is far from over. However, real life occurrences happen every day outside the realm of debate and rhetoric, and decisions need to be made.
Another aspect of physician assisted suicide is this procedure devalues the lives of those who are disabled. A family may feel that it would ease their financial burden if their loved one committed suicide and desired to aid them in the process. However, if those are not the true wishes of the individual, how can we put a price on a person's life, the only chance we will ever have to partake in this experience? For a medical doctor, there is a sense of obligation to the individual to ease their suffering. The conflicting problem is that the assisted suicides cannot be effectively and properly regulated; the lines are too fuzzy as to where we can draw the limitations.
Physician assisted suicide should be morally permissible. Patients who are in constant suffering and pain have the right to end their misery at their own discretion. This paper will explore my thesis, open the floor to counter arguments, explain my objections to the counter arguments, and finally end with my conclusion. I agree with Brock when he states that the two ethical values, self-determination and individual well-being, are the focal points for the argument of the ethical permissibility of voluntary active euthanasia (or physician assisted suicide). These two values are what drives the acceptability of physician assisted suicide because it is the patients who choose their treatment options and how they want to be medically treated. Patients are physically and emotionally aware when they are dying and in severe pain, therefore they can make the decision to end the suffering through the option of physician assisted suicide.
They were the subjects of public disputes with family members, court systems, medical professionals, the media, and society at large. Terri Schiavo, Nancy Cruzan and Karen Ann Quinlan; their names are synonymous with permanent vegetative state (PVS). The amazing technological advancements in modern medicine has been credited with keeping persons alive who in times past would have died, therefore this is remarkable for countless families. In the cases of the Quinlan’s, the Cruzan’s and many like them, families members find it unbearable to witness loved ones who linger indefinitely in PVS with little or no chance for recovery. There are many like Terri Schiavo’s parents, who value the lives of their love ones no matter how limited their
Although a patient’s choice of suicide symbolizes an expression of self-determination, there is a great distinction between denying life-sustaining treatments and demanding life-ending treatments. The right to self-determination is a right to allow or reject offered treatments, not to choose what should be offered. The right to refuse life-sustaining interventions does not correlate with a right to force others to hasten their death. The inability of physicians to inhibit death does not mean that physicians are allowed to help induce death.
In end-of-life scenarios, where the patient may not be able to communicate their wishes, decisions must be made either by the healthcare professional(s) or family member(s). However, who gets to decide or where the line should be drawn are not always clear. Consequently, not all decisions may be ethically permissible. To illustrate, I will discuss a scenario in which physicians and family are not in agreement. Upon proving a brief summary and explaining the ethical dilemma, I will provide moral reasons for two ethically permissible choices from which, by referencing the principle of autonomy and Utilitarianism, will determine which course of action ought to be carried out.
The issues surrounding assisted suicide are multifaceted. One could argue the practice of assisted suicide can appear to be a sensible response to genuine human suffering. Allowing health care professionals to carry out these actions may seem appropriate, in many cases, when the decision undoubtedly promotes the patient's autonomy. From this viewpoint, the distinctions made between assisted suicide and the withholding of life-sustaining measures appears artificial and tough to sustain. In many cases, the purpose and consequences of these practices are equivalent. On the contrary, if
The deliberate act of ending another 's life, given his or her consent, is formally referred to as euthanasia. At present, euthanasia is one of the most controversial social-ethical issues that we face, in that it deals with a sensitive subject matter where there is much uncertainty as to what position one ought to take. Deliberately killing another person is presumed by most rational people as a fundamental evil act. However, when that person gives his or her consent to do so, this seems to give rise to an exceptional case. This can be illustrated in the most common case of euthanasia, where the person who is willing to die suffers from an illness that causes great pain, and will result in his or her demise in the not-so-distant future.