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March 23, 2016 | Author: | Posted in ethics, social sciences


The issue of euthanasia has hounded the area of medical ethics in the past few years . If patients have a right to die , should doctors help them end their lives ? Physicians have been willing to stop any extraordinary efforts to sustain life (for example , by withholding oxygen or ending intravenous feedings such actions are referred to as passive euthanasia , or dyathanasia . Euthanasia , the active form of so-called mercy killing , has generally been viewed as illegal and unethical

However , according to U .S . surveys , there is greater support for physician-assisted [banner_entry_middle]

suicide and euthanasia among patients and the general public than among physicians (Kashima and Braun , 15 October 2001 . More Caucasians support these practices than members of ethnic minority groups (Braun , et al , February 2001

This is a very sorry situation wherein people would like to have complete control of their lives . In reality , humans have limited control but , ultimately , are forced to accept phenomena which they cannot change . Sickness and death fall into this category . The humane response to a dying person is to keep him company and alleviate his discomfort There is no medical or ethical reason to deprive a person of all the pain medication needed to keep him comfortable and , for most people , a regimen of comfort care can be established in either a health care facility or at home . To be sure , keeping company with the dying and caring for their physical needs is a demanding task , but it is not a task devoid of benefits . In the face of death , real communication often occurs and caretakers frequently relate how their experiences with dying patients , relatives , or friends help them come to terms with their own mortality

Nature has its own laws and people should allow it to take its course Each human life will end in death eventually , we do not have to stop life when it is still not the time . If euthanasia becomes acceptable , we would need to ask ourselves what would happen to both dying people and to ourselves . The answer to this question is that the lives of the dying would be ended by assaults which would probably be experienced as frightening and uncaring . Things would likely be even worse for the living who kill the sick and the weak , because they would have to live with their consciences while trying over and over to justify what civilized societies and health care ethics have long condemned . It is difficult to rationalize a killing role and more difficult to live with the psychological repercussions resulting from assuming that role

Kayashima , R , and Braun , K .L (2001 , October 15 . Examining the Variance in Support for Assisted Death Among Physicians , Patients , and the General Public . Gerontologist (49 )1

Braun , Kathryn , et al (2001 , February . Support for Physician-Assisted Suicide : Exploring the Impact of Ethnicity and Attitudes Toward Planning for Death .Gerontologist , 41 (1


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