Owing to the derogatory connotation associated with the word “suicide,” physician-assisted suicide is often referred to as “physician aid-in-dying.” Nonetheless, this is a situation in which a person finds the aid of a psychiatrist in order to end their lives for one cause or another (Bok, Dworkin, Frey & Bok, 2015). Physicians who engage in such dishonest behavior are condemned by health professional ethics. Nonetheless, doctors all around the globe continue to support patients by delivering potentially deadly drugs in response to their attempts to end their lives. Physician-assisted suicide can take various forms; it could be direct execution to end the presence of a patient or by giving the prescription but allow the patient to execute it for themselves. More than 50% of physicians across the world have been requested to assist in harmful actions (Lewy, 2012).
Physician-assisted suicide should be legalized but limited depending on the prevailing circumstances.
There are various perceptions regarding physician-assisted suicide. However, it would be prudent to legalize it, but this should be limited to extreme cases where patients are in continuous pain that seem incurable. Diseases like cancer have proven to be not only fatal in some cases but also expensive to treat for most families across the world (Staff, 2014). Therefore, when a patient is enduring severe illness, sometimes patients consider termination of life as the only option to end their sufferings.
Nonetheless, there have been cases where individuals have sought suicide assistance to avoid justice or provision of crucial information about ongoing investigations (Fleisher & Zames, 2012). Therefore, in such instances, assisted suicide should be prevented at all cost no regardless of the pain a patient is feeling.
In conclusion, physician-assisted suicide is subjective and should be examined depending on the circumstances. Where it is the only solution to end a patient’s pain, then it should be considered. However, where the action is to escape justice, then it should be avoided at all cost.
Bok, S., Dworkin, G., Frey, R. G., & Bok, S. (2015). Physician-Assisted Suicide. Euthanasia and Physician-Assisted Suicide, 128-139.
Fleisher, D. Z., & Zames, (2012). The disability rights movement: from charity to confrontation. Philadelphia: Temple University Press.
Staff, N. (2014, November 20). Debate: Should Physician-Assisted Suicide Be Legal? http://npr.org/2014/11/20/365509889.
Lewy, G. (2012). Physician-assisted Suicide in Oregon. Assisted Death in Europe and America, 126-146.