Physician Assisted Suicide : Who Should Decide?

Topics: Medical ethics, Death, Medicine Pages: 3 (1087 words) Published: July 17, 2011
Physician Assisted Suicide: Who Should Decide?
Physician assisted suicide is a highly controversial issue that has many ethical concerns. There are many moral issues that should be considered when discussing physician-assisted suicide. Many people relate religion as a part of why physician assisted suicide is wrong and others state it violates the Hippocratic Oath. In this paper, we will discuss the moral dilemma of physician-assisted suicide. We will also examine the arguments against and in favor of physician assisted suicide and which view is closer to my own. Over the years, there has been much debate within the United States as to whether or not assisted suicide should be allowed. This battle has been long fought, those who support the practice of physician-assisted suicide state that those who are terminally ill should have the right to die with dignity. Those against the practice of physician-assisted suicide state it is not only morally wrong but the same as murder. The classical ethics theory of virtue ethics has been utilized to argue against physician assisted suicide since first instances of the issue. Arguments against legalizing the practice of physician-assisted suicide include arguments that doctors take the Hippocratic Oath, which many argue is in favor of preserving life, rather than help take it. (Cite Hippocratic oath debate here) Those in favor of physician-assisted suicide argue that the patients that seek it as a viable option do so because their disease is beyond treatment and other options do not preserve their dignity and right to a peaceful death. In choosing physician assisted suicide, the patient maintains control over their final days and even hours on this earth. They can prepare themselves and their loved ones for their death and knowing when it will happen can often provide a sense of peace. (Cite info in favor of pas here) This debate was at a heated topic in the state of Oregon for many years. The Death with...
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