Euthanasia - Assisted Suicide Or Assisted Dying

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The terms euthanasia, assisted suicide or assisted dying denotes the intentional killing of a person suffering from an incurable disorder and originates from Greek words Eu (good) and Thanatos death. Dowbiggin, (2003) states that pre-Christian societies tolerated suicide, abortions and ‘active’ euthanasia, the death of a person from fatal medications given by a second person. However, not all society was so tolerant of such practices, according to Mcphearson (2015), Hippocrates and his followers took an oath to do no harm to their patients, which included the prohibition of giving a deadly drug to patients. Today, the medical world considers Hippocrates as the father of ethical medicine and as such the Hippocratic oath remains the ethical foundation of current medical practice (ibid). Baker (2006) suggests that ethical knowledge was enhanced in the 17th century when Francis Bacon, Lord Chancellor, created a new deathbed role for physicians offering 'outward ' euthanasia, a pain free death for the dying body, in direct response to the clergy 's disregard of scientific knowledge. It can be theorised that in creating this role, Bacon had empowered physicians to show beneficence, towards the dying. Paulus (2009) suggests that many regard beneficence, to do good for others, as basic principle of 21st century Palliative Care. Indeed, Together for Short Lives (2016) defines Palliative Care for children and young people with life-limiting conditions, as a holistic approach to
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