The Argument Against Physician Assisted Suicide

3329 Words 14 Pages
Arin Nazari
Sociology 101 Research Paper
Professor Barlow
April 16, 2015
Physician Assisted Suicide
Assisted suicide is an issue that has constantly been debated throughout the world for many years. Terminally ill people who go through unbearable suffering decide to end their lives by asking help from their physicians. The use of medicines help the patients in critical conditions die with almost no pain within a short period of time. Because this act is done voluntarily by the patients, it is considered suicide; however, the physician, as well, plays a great role in providing the substances. For that reason, the act is called “physician assisted suicide”. This controversial subject has been a “dominant social and moral issue” and has significantly
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The argument against physician assisted death is based on the effects that it is going to have on the “moral integrity of medical profession” (Humber 8). The Hippocratic Oath that doctors take states that “I will not administer poison to anyone where asked,” or “be of benefit, or at least do not harm” ( According to opponents, the oath itself bans physicians from taking steps such as PAS. These groups argue that through legalizing it, assisted suicide will become inappropriately common. Some patients, who do not have enough access to care and support may be forced to go through this step. Investigations in Netherlands have shown that the informal policy of voluntary euthanasia in the country leads to involuntary acts constantly. Some others may be encouraged to do it against their will because of their health care expenses. The majority of the patients’ families face economic problems, and assisted suicide can become a cost-containment option for the patient. Other emotional hardships that terminally ill people believe they cause their surroundings with their illness may also push them into PAS. Therefore, arguments against PAS propose that physician assisted suicide should be illegal in order for less potential for abuse (Humber …show more content…
In November 2008, Washington became the second state in the United States legalizing this practice. The state voted to allow physician assisted suicide in ballot following the Oregon model. Washington’s Death with Dignity Act passed in the state by 58% to 42%. This choice is not a “huge advance for liberty.” But the terminally ill patients have the option to end their lives due to their sorrow; what the government considers an appropriate reason. However, they must take the needed steps that are a “state-mandated ritual”

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