Physician Assisted Suicide
Physician assisted suicide (PAS) should be protected by law as a right to patients that suffer from a life threatening illness, or pain so severe that they are unable to function as a happy human being. One could argue that forcing someone to remain alive in such conditions is torture, and denying the patient his natural right to die. As far as ethics go, it should not be a question of whether it is right or wrong to commit suicide, the patient will do that if he wants it badly enough. The question at hand is why any person would allow another to suffer in ways unthinkable, when there is a way for them to die peacefully. Whether the question is of the rights of the physician, the rights of the patient, or the ethics of the act, it should remain an option for any terminal patient.
Many have questioned the right of physicians to assist someone in dying, when they have taken an oath to save lives instead, but “60% [of physicians] agreed that physician-assisted suicide should be legal…” (Gupta 4). In addition to that, a doctor’s job is to treat a patient with every available technology and medical advancement available, and this includes euthanasia in that pivotal moment when nothing else can be done to extend the patient’s life. Many argue that PAS is “playing God” with human life, but this argument does not hold up because one could just as well argue that keeping a terminally ill patient alive would be doing the exact same. Most people that say this simply do not understand the need of a human to die with dignity and ease.
Many people will also argue that people in such states of pain and suffering are not in the right mind to make such a decision. This accusation is false though, because pain brings clarity. The body knows its strengths and weaknesses, and it knows when not to continue. Also, if the person experiencing the pain is not qualified, then what makes a family member or a doctor more qualified to make it? All “patients
Cited: ERGO. Assisted Suicide. n.d. Document. 16 February 2013. Ersek, Mary. “Assisted Suicide: Unraveling a complex issue.” Nursing 35.4 (2005): 48. Pang. “Editorial Comment.” Nursing Ethics 13.2 (2006): 103.