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PHIL 434: Medical Ethics and Issues

PHIL 434: Medical Ethics and Issues

PHIL 434: Medical Ethics and Issues

Week 2 Term Paper: Physician-Assisted Suicide

Topic

End of Life, usually referred to as physician-assisted suicide, is the subject I have decided

to focus on for my research project.

Why I Chose This Topic

The practice of assisted suicide by a medical professional has been a contentious issue for

many years. Researching it and gaining more information about it is fascinating to me. My

readings, a debate I witnessed, and my curiosity to know more about end-of-life ethical issues

significantly impacted my decision to write about this subject. I can argue for both the

advantages and the disadvantages of this subject. To select a position on the debate, I need to

study the subject further.

Pro Arguments

The right of an individual to self-government is among the ethical justifications that may

be made in favor of this activity. It offers the person the power that is justly theirs, letting the

individual select for themselves what they ought to do with their life and what they should focus

on. The fact that individuals in pain will be relieved is a significant consideration here. The

utilitarian theory is the one that lends credibility to this line of reasoning. By adhering to this

notion, the larger good will be protected in addition to the particular benefit. End-of-life care is

provided not just to patients who are in the last phase of their lives but also to persons who have

been afflicted with chronic conditions (Hemberg & Bergdahl, 2019).

Con Arguments

The deontology theory provides support for the ethical principle that is against the

activity in question. According to Pence (2020), people are only really free when they make

 

 

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rational decisions, and a good action always regards other people as goals in and of themselves

rather than as a means to an end. No of the circumstances, it is never acceptable to murder

another person. People who disagree with the physician-assisted suicide hypothesis claim that

life is sacrosanct and that humans have no business playing God since it is against nature.

Opponents of physician-assisted suicide believe that the practice breaches human dignity and

taints the integrity of medicine (Sprung et al., 2018).

My Current Stance on the Topic

I believe that doctors should be allowed to help their patients kill themselves. Most

persuasive to me is the idea that the sick person struggling is given an opportunity to end their

own agony and sorrow via this method. The individual has the right to choose the time and

manner of their death. It is a relief to know that a loved one is at peace and is no longer in pain,

which brings closure to the family.

 

 

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References

Hemberg, J., & Bergdahl, E. (2019). Dealing with ethical and existential issues at end of life

through co-creation. Nursing Ethics, 27(4), 1012–1031.

https://doi.org/10.1177/0969733019874496

Pence, G. E. (2020). Medical Ethics: Accounts of Ground-breaking Cases. In Google Books.

McGraw-Hill Education.

https://books.google.com/books/about/Medical_Ethics.html?id=poVAzQEACAAJ

Sprung, C. L., Somerville, M. A., Radbruch, L., Collet, N. S., Duttge, G., Piva, J. P., Antonelli,

M., Sulmasy, D. P., Lemmens, W., & Ely, E. W. (2018). Physician-Assisted Suicide and

Euthanasia. Journal of Palliative Care, 33(4), 197–203.

https://doi.org/10.1177/0825859718777325

 

https://doi.org/10.1177/0969733019874496
https://books.google.com/books/about/Medical_Ethics.html?id=poVAzQEACAAJ
https://doi.org/10.1177/0825859718777325

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