Physician Assisted Suicide

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There are many different opinions about Assisted Suicide. People question the moral and the ethical reasons behind it. A terminally ill person should have the decision of ending their life if they choose to do so. It’s their life, so it’s ultimately their choice.

There are technically two types of physician-assisted suicide, Active and Passive. Active is when you give the patient drugs or other means to help end the suffering. Passive is the opposite, passive is where the doctors withhold drugs, food and other substances needed for survival.

The term Physician Assisted Suicide is defined by the American Medical Association as “when a physician provides a patient with the medical means and/or the medical knowledge to commit suicide”. By giving the patients this knowledge, it gives them another option to consider when thinking about treatment options.

An article that was posted on ‘heathresearchfunding.org’ stated, “In 2006 a Gallup Poll asked if physicians should be allowed by legal means to end a person’s life using a painless procedure, if that person had a fatal disease that could not be cured and if that person and their family requested this procedure.

Some 69% of those responding answered yes to the question.” Families of terminally ill patients and the patients themselves believe they would allow this if it were an option.

Assisted Suicide can be a valid option when dealing with terminally ill patients who don’t want to suffer any longer. Lone Star College says “after studying both sides of the issue, a compassionate individual must conclude that competent terminal patients should be given the right to assisted suicide in order to end their suffering, reduce the damaging financial effects of hospital care on their families, and preserve the individual right of people to determine their own fate.”

To first start in the medical field, students must take an oath called the Hippocratic Oath. One statement from the Hippocratic Oath says, “First, do no harm…”, by taking this oath, they promise to never harm a patient in any way. This is one of the strongest opposing arguments to assisted suicide. The phrase “…do no harm…”, isn’t practical. A person with an inoperable cancer has the option of getting chemotherapy and/or radiation, the treatment is causing them harm in some way.

Many countries such as, Canada, Belgium, and the Netherlands have made Assisted Suicide legal. Some states in the U.S. are now legalizing it as well.

Work Cited

  1. “Physician-Assisted Suicide.” American Medical Association, https://www.ama-assn.org/delivering-care/ethics/physician-assisted-suicide.
  2. Assisted Suicide Laws Around the World – Assisted Suicide, http://www.assistedsuicide.org/suicide_laws.html.
  3. “The Right to Assisted Suicide.” The Right to Assisted Suicide, http://www.lonestar.edu/rightto-assist-suicide.htm.
  4. “25 Surprising Physician Assisted Suicide Statistics.” HRF, 3 Apr. 2015, https://healthresearchfunding.org/physician-assisted-suicide-statistics/.
  5. Shmerling, Robert H. “First, Do No Harm.” Harvard Health Blog, 14 Oct. 2015, https://www.health.harvard.edu/blog/first-do-no-harm-201510138421.


Cite this paper

Physician Assisted Suicide. (2020, Sep 24). Retrieved from https://samploon.com/physician-assisted-suicide-2/

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