The Ethical Issue Of Euthanasia And Physician Assisted Suicide

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Going back to researchers Boudreau & Somerville: “In PAS, a physician, at the request of a competent patient, prescribes a lethal quantity of medication, intending that the patient will use the chemicals to commit suicide. In short, in assisted suicide, the person takes the death-inducing product; in euthanasia, another individual administers it. Both are self-willed deaths” (Boudreau & Somerville, 2014, pg. 2). For this paper my main focus will be on the issue of physician-assisted suicide. I am interested in other countries attitudes about the practice as well as the legality in other countries including but not limited to the United States. Also I am interested in the research that has been put into the issue of euthanasia more specifically …show more content…
However, we know that millions of kids get diagnosed with cancer, some just as debilitating and deadly as adults with the same cancers. So this brings us the moral/ethical issue of children and euthanasia. With regard to legality of children and euthanasia, the ethical issue is brought up in Coghlan (2013) article in New Scientist titled “Should young children be given the right to die? Coghlan’s article discusses proposal to vote on a law that could abolish a need to be a specific age to receive euthanasia (Coghlan, 2013). According to the article, “the law applies to anyone aged 12 and above—with children under 16 needing their parent’s consent” (Coghlan, 2013). This then of course raises the question at what age is a child able to fully understand their diagnosis, or even fully understand the concept of dying (Coghlan, 2013). According to the article, if the law allows for euthanasia for children of any age, they still have to meet the same requirements, as do adults (doctor & psychiatrist approval) (Coghlan, 2013). Coghlan does bring up an interesting point that even if the law extends the right for euthanasia at any age, what if one person disagrees, say just one parent (Coghlan, 2013). I could see this turning into a court battle, as we have seen when one parent wishes to extent treatment, but the other claims it goes against their religious convictions. Be that as it may, if children are strong enough to endure the same type of cancer treatments as adults, then if they chose they should be given the same right to euthanasia, as would an adult in the same situation. I really think we probably hear less about this issue involving children and euthanasia as I would suspect there may be an element of fear in regards to death with children that old enough to understand. Just like we learned earlier in the paper, Brittany

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