Andrew La Belle |
If terminal illness leads to low quality of life than the patient should be the only person to decide if physician-assisted suicide is a viable alternative. |
It is a question that sparks debate across a broad spectrum, the issue of physician-assisted suicide. Physician-assisted suicide or (PAS) refers to as the practice of a physician giving a terminally ill patient a lethal dose of medicine at the patients’ request. The issue of PAS plays on human emotions, religious ideologies, and medical ethics. Society frowns upon suicide as a majority. It is not an argument for suicide in matters of mental health. Instead, an argument that focuses strictly on the right and benefits of using PAS strictly in matters of terminal illness.
Poll of 1000 adults conducted May 22-24, 2007
*includes persons who refused to answer.
Source: AP-IPSOS (Associated Press, 2007) http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/18923323/
According to an MSNBC online poll of nearly 41,000 people, an overwhelming 89% thought that there are circumstances in which a patient should be allowed to die. (MSNBC, 2010) According to the same poll 79% of people thought that it should be legal for doctors to help terminally ill patients die by giving them a prescription for lethal drugs. Human emotion should dictate laws be passed making PAS legal in most places, yet this is not the case. States like Oregon and Washington passed laws making PAS legal, as well as countries like The Netherlands, Switzerland, and Belgium. There are still dividing lines that must be crossed before the practice of PAS becomes widely acceptable and practiced. The lines are especially blurred in the areas of religion and medical ethics. Many religions say a soul which commits suicide goes straight to hell to be damned for eternity. Medical ethics and the doctoral code state that doctors must do everything in their power to save the patients’ life. The only logical... [continues]
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