The Case Of Physician Assisted Suicide

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The Hippocratic Oath is often seen as the determining factor of all medical decisions, but those decisions can be based off of the wrong participant’s point of view. With a multitude of ethics to follow, physicians have always decided what course of action is the most beneficial to their patients. Living in a constantly shifting society, however, has shed light on the power struggle between the rights of patients and the ethics of medicine. In the case of physician-assisted suicide, the conflict of power should resolve with the ultimate decision-making power resting in the hands of the patients. Patient autonomy is often the focus of the death with dignity debate. The rights of the patient should be respected. Losing control is a fear held by many patients suffering from either degenerative or terminal illness. Some hold the position that life is unexpected, and fate is out of human control. Though nature is unpredictable and "deadly tornadoes and hurricanes are painful reminders" of that loss of control (Friend, 2011, p. 114), the same does not have to be true for those with illnesses. This fear is often shown through the dependency on others. Without the law, it is very common for patients to take their own life in order to gain a sense of control. Justice Lynn Smith of Canada indicated that, according to the case of a woman seeking the right to assisted suicide, "[the plaintiff 's] decreased lifespan would occur if she concludes the she needs to take her own
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