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The Positives and the Negative Aspects of Physician Assisted Suicide - Research Paper Example

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This research paper focuses on physician-assisted suicide as a medical issue and theories that attempt to explain this issue. This paper attempts to determine both the positives and the negative aspects of Physician-assisted suicide. Several questions arise in relation to physician-assisted suicide.  …
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The Positives and the Negative Aspects of Physician Assisted Suicide
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Download file to see previous pages The very public death of Terri Schiavo in 2005 alerted Americans to the growing medical, ethical, and social crises accompanying the status of end of life issues and decisions in the USA. Physician-Assisted Suicide (PAS) is legalized in only two USA states, yet there have been numerous requests across the country to perform the operation. As indicated in the 2012 PBS Frontline documentary; there is an underground world that has added new legal and moral complexity to one of the most divisive issues in the United States of America. The practice of Physician-assisted suicide has been legal in Washington and Oregon states since 1997-09.

In Montana State, the Supreme Court ruled in 2009 that physician-assisted suicide was legal, even though the issue has been the subject of contention (Antiel and Curlin, 267). In February 2012 in Georgia State, the Supreme Court rejected a law aimed at controlling information about PAS. There have been several unfruitful efforts to legalize PAS in States such as California, Massachusetts, Maine, and Hawaii. In the international front, Physician-assisted suicide has been legalized in few countries including the Netherlands, Belgium, and Switzerland. Public opinion data from 1947 to 2011 report that Americans support greater rights for individuals facing end-of-life decisions- including euthanasia and PAS (Gill, 120).

Physician assisted suicide is the voluntary termination of one’s own life by administration of a lethal substance through the use of indirect or direct assistance of a physician. It is the practice of delivering a competent patient with a prescription for medication for the patient to utilize with the basic intention of ending his or her own life. Physician assisted suicide has both opponents and proponents (Antiel and Curlin, 156).  Some people argue that physician-assisted suicide is a violation of the fundamental tenet of the medical profession and believes that medical practitioners should not assist in suicides because to do so in not compatible with the doctor’s function as a healer. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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