Physician Assisted Suicide

Topics: Ethics, Medicine, Physician Pages: 3 (1267 words) Published: March 4, 2013
End of life decisions can cause people to make choices they would not normally choose. People begin to reflect on their lives, remembering the good and the bad. I believe one wish when facing death that most people have is they do not want to suffer. They also do not want their family to watch them suffer. I think that physician assisted suicide may be a consideration in some extreme cases where pain cannot be controlled with medications or when the patient is comatose and will never regain consciousness. Many people believe that physician assisted suicide is unethical because it is viewed as murder. Those who view physician assisted suicide as unethical also feel that no one, even a physician has the right to assist anyone with suicide.

When reading about the classical ethical theories our text discusses, I think deontology would be the best choice to best describe and resolve the physician assisted suicide. Deontology does not look at the consequences of an act; it looks at the reason for which an act is done (Mosser, 2010). Deontology states that the consequence of the decision should not play a role in making the decision. When physicians assist patients with suicide, they are focusing on the why the patient is seeking their help. The patient is obviously in a great deal of pain and is suffering beyond human capability. A physician who is assisting the patient with suicide would be focusing on helping the patient relieve their suffering. The physician is not focused on what the consequences of their actions are because their first concern is that of the patient. Assisting a patient with suicide is an emotional decision for the physician. Physicians do not want to see their patients suffer and feel it is their ethical responsibility to do whatever they can to help relieve the suffering. Some physicians believe that by assisting their patients with suicide they are within their ethical bounds because they are relieving the patient of pain and suffering. I...
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