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Also, these ill patients fear the suffering and pain that comes with being terminally ill. While many families would like their ill loved ones to continue to live as long as possible, some terminally ill patients would rather not endure their suffering while witnessing their family's suffering as well.

These patients fear Continue reading this essay Continue reading. Toggle navigation MegaEssays. Saved Essays. Topics in Paper.

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This must then be certified by a third doctor. The patient has to submit a written request as well as an oral request. A few days following, the patient is given a barbiturate: secobarbital or pentobarbital, and they must take the medication on their own Mackinnon When researching among patients the reason for requesting physician-assisted suicide, it was not to relieve pain or financial problems, but to preserve autonomy and personal control. Why are they doing this?

Assisted Suicide Essay – Guide on How to Write Well

For what reason? Some may even view it as a selfish act. Family and friends would be put through much sadness if a loved one were to have their live ended, but they need to consider the true reasoning behind the request for physician-assisted suicide. They want control of their own lives. He created a euthanasia device consisting of a metal pole that had containers of medications attached to it.

The patient would push a button, starting a flow of simple saline into their bodies. Anesthesia would then run into their bodies, causing them to become unconscious. About a minute following, potassium chloride would then start to flow, causing cardiac arrest, and death. He was then arrested and found guilty of first-degree homicide, sentenced to spend ten to twenty-five years in prison. When asked if he believes physicians should offer the option to end life to their patients, Dr. Are physicians not trained to improve our health or save our life?

Physician-Assisted Suicide Project

This leads to much debate on the subject. This oath states that as a physician these new graduates swear to practice medicine ethically. When applying this to the. They are taught about various treatments and medications that work to preserve human life, not end it. When looking at the subject of physician-assisted suicide through the eyes of terminally ill patients who request this service, the negative viewpoints change.

Emmanuel Levinas, a Jewish philosopher, closely researched ethics and morals related to the topic of physician-assisted suicide in comparison to the Hippocratic Oath. One immediate objection to assisted suicide can be raised from within a Levinasean perspective. Instead, the drawing together of a community or of family members in service to the needs of a terminal patient could serve to deepen and increase their own humanity.

Antonio Grotto, from Weill Medical College of Cornell University, admitted that students did laugh when reciting the original version of the famous Oath. Gotto said. Does this mean the idea is open for actual consideration and should be legal in situations that meet certain criteria in the entire United States as well as other countries throughout the world?

There are still many ethical theories and personal beliefs from physicians.

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Utilitarianism, the ethical principle of bringing the greatest good to the greatest number of people, is one principle that could be used as a looking glass to view the topic of physician-assisted suicide. Many physicians feel like they were educated to bring relief to those who are suffering from illness or injury. One patient is upset by the fact that her final wish cannot be carried out due to so many objections.

Is good truly being brought to the greatest number of people by allowing the right to die? It may be, if the thing that is good for that person is to end their suffering. There will always be objections to this theory, such as physicians are doing harm by ending life rather than doing good by saving or prolonging it.

Why are we wanting do we want? What is the true motive? The belief that people should have the highest intrinsic or monetary value to us also comes into practice Mackinnon Are we devaluing human life by allowing physician-assisted suicide? Human life is supposed to be regarded as something that is very precious. By allowing physicians to take life away so easily, this could make others feel that it really does not have high intrinsic value, since it can be ended so quickly and easily, with no questions asked.

On the other hand, if you want to end life to end pain, suffering, or to let someone die with dignity from a terminal illness then this would be legal in the eyes of authority, and no criminal charges would be brought against you. The end result is not important, but the motives used to get to the end are! Another viewpoint is that of virtue ethics. A person has certain virtues or strengths built into them through the influence of those around them. You become the kind of person you would want to be.

Our social interaction with authority figures throughout our upbringing form how we ought to be, or our virtue ethics. Aristotle states that there are two types of virtues: intellectual virtues and moral virtues. Intellectual virtues help us reason and judge well, while moral virtues dispose us to act well Mackinnon Voluntary euthanasia for the elderly was an approved custom in several ancient societies.

Euthanasia has been accepted both legally and morally in various forms in many societies. District Judge Barbara Rothstein wrote R Organizations supporting the legalization of voluntary euthanasia were established in Great Britain in and in the United States in They have gained some public support, but so far they have been unable to achieve their goal in either nation.

In the last few decades, Western laws against passive and voluntary euthanasia have slowly been eased 1.

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The proeuthanasia, or "right to die," movement has received considerable encouragement by the passage of laws in 40 states by , which allow legally competent individuals to make "living wills. Euthanasia continues to occur in all societies, including those in which it is held to be immoral and illegal. A medically assisted end to a meaningless and worthless "void" of an existence is both accepted and condoned by the medical profession. Christianity, Judaism, and Islam all hold human life sacred and condemn euthanasia in any form.

The American Medical Association continues to condemn assisted suicide. Western laws have generally considered the act of helping someone to die a form of homicide subject to legal sanctions. Even a passive withholding of help to prevent death has frequently been severely punished.

Physician Assisted Suicide Essay Conclusion

The Board of Trustees of the American Medical Association recommends that the American Medical Association reject euthanasia and physician-assisted suicide as being incompatible with the nature and purposes of the healing arts R This is a flight from the challenge of social compassion. The issue of euthanasia is not a recent one.

The Oath of Hippocrates is said to have originated in approximately the fifth century B. The family, friends or even foes of someone that elects to exercise their "right to die"? It is suggested that a person suffering from an incurable or terminal illness is not complete command of their mental faculties and thereby incapable of such an extraordinary decision. Surely a degraded mental capacity rules out realistic thinking with regard to survivors. How many "innocent bystanders" also pay the price of euthanasia? Synthesis For Euthanasia Euthanasia occurs in all societies, including those in which it is held to be immoral and illegal.

Euthanasia occurs under the guise of secrecy in societies that secrecy is mandatory. The first priority for the care of patients facing severe pain as a result of a terminal illness or chronic condition should be the relief of their pain. Relieving the patient's psychosocial and other suffering is as important as relieving the patient's pain. Western laws against passive and voluntary euthanasia have slowly been eased, although serious moral and legal questions still exist. Some opponents of euthanasia have feared that the increasing success that doctors have had in transplanting human organs might lead to abuse of the practice of euthanasia.

It is now generally understood, however, that physicians will not violate the rights of the dying donor in order to help preserve the life of the organ recipient. Even though polls indicate most Americans support the right of sick people to end their pain through self-inflicted death, euthanasia is one of the more contentious aspects of the death-with-dignity movement.

Slightly more than half of the physicians surveyed in Washington State would approve the legalization of physician-assisted suicide and euthanasia under certain circumstances. A total of physicians completed questionnaires about their attitudes toward euthanasia and assisted suicide. Physician- assisted suicide was described as prescribing medication and providing counseling to patients on overdosing to end their own lives. Euthanasia was defined as administering an overdose of medication at an ill patient's request.

Forty-two percent of physicians indicated that they found euthanasia ethically acceptable under some circumstances. Fifty-four percent indicated that they believed euthanasia should be legal under certain circumstances. Today, patients are entitled to opt for passive euthanasia; that is, to make free and informed choices to refuse life support. The controversy over active euthanasia, however, is likely to remain intense because of opposition from religious groups and many members of the medical profession.

The medical profession has generally been caught in the middle of the social controversies that rage over euthanasia.


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Government and religious groups as well as the medical profession itself agree that doctors are not required to use "extraordinary means" to prolong the life of the terminally ill. The Second Chamber of the Dutch Parliment developed and approved the following substantive and procedural guidelines, or "points" for Dutch physicians to consider when practicing or administering Euthanasia: Substantive Guidelines a Euthanasia must be voluntary; the patient's request must be seriously considered and enduring.