Physician Aid in Dying

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Physician Aid in Dying

Bioethics is considered by some to be the decisions made by a person or group using logic and knowledge of right or wrong as it affects current biological issues. It is a growing concern in today’s world where people are caught in a balancing act of human nature and law to determine right and wrong regarding biological and medical issues concerning them. A bioethical issue that has been around for years is physician aid in death. Although this issue is said to give terminally ill patients the comfort and dignity of ending their lives on the terms they choose, some say that decisions are influenced by doctors and infringe upon human rights.

Physician aided death is a general term that covers assisted suicide, voluntary active euthanasia, involuntary active euthanasia, and non-voluntary euthanasia (Boyd, Boyd, and Grande). Many people consider all of these actions to be in violation of the doctors Hippocratic Oath, while others find some of these actions to fall under the guidelines of the Hippocratic Oath. Influential figures of this bioethical issue include the infamous Dr. Jack Kevorkian who advocated assisted suicide and was taken to trial five times to be convicted of only one murder, the murder of Thomas Youk (Jack Kevorkian). Dr. Timothy Quill advocates the issue from a compassionate side where he believes that a person should have the right to a dignified death (Boyd, Boyd, and Grande).

Dr. Kevorkian found assisted suicide to be more of a research topic than an ethical issue. He was interested in the science of death and how it could help future medicine. The opposition of the idea uses him as an example as to why they believe physician aide in death is wrong. However, the side advocating the issue uses Dr. Timothy Quill to help prove their point.

The opposition of physician aided death says it is a violation of the Hippocratic Oath. The original Hippocratic Oath, created by Hippocrates prohibited euthanasia (Tyson). The...
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