The Prothical Dilemmas: The Timothy Quill Case

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The prompt that I chose was “The Timothy Quill Case.” Dr. Timothy Quill starts off the case by describing to his readers about the events that happened. He published the case as an article in New England Journal of Medicine in March 1991. Dr. Quill prescribed barbiturates for his 45 year old patient who was suffering from leukemia, Patricia Diane Trumbull. He also told his patient the amount of drug taken that would be considered lethal. The patient then continued to kill herself due to overdosing of the drug that Dr. Quill informed her of. Dr. Quill was then tried that his actions had “assisted” his patient in committing suicide. The board unanimously decided there was no misconduct and an important factor that to this decision was Dr. Quill’s …show more content…
Quill was informing his patient, Patricia, of the lethal dosage levels for the barbiturates. The patient then decided to take that same amount and was overdose that caused the patient death. The dilemma was whether it was ethical for Dr. Quill to inform his patient that knowledge and whether it was appropriate to prescribe her barbiturates. In my personal opinion, I felt that it was unethical for him to prescribe her barbiturates. The article didn’t mention whether it was Patricia who wanted him to end her suffering or whether he did it out of sympathy. Either way, the act was immoral. Dr. Quill had no right to end a patient’s life. He performed active euthanasia and therefore is illegal to do …show more content…
There are different types of euthanasia— active and passive euthanasia, and voluntary, involuntary, and non voluntary euthanasia. Active euthanasia, as mentioned earlier, is basically killing the person, whereas passive euthanasia is an act where you let the other person die. Voluntary euthanasia happens when someone takes their own life— either by refusing treatment or literally killing themselves. Involuntary euthanasia happens when someone ends the life of another person without their consent. Non voluntary euthanasia happens when the person has no consent over his or her own life, and has to be decided for them either by family, physicians, etc. I don’t necessarily agree with euthanizing nor ending someone’s life in terms of that is the best answer for them. The only time I would agree in euthanasia are when either the patient is in their last stages of their medical conditions and no treatment is able to prolong their life or maybe when the patient begs you to end their life and you abide to their decisions. For an example, if Dr. Quill’s patient, Patricia, is in their last stage of leukemia and her body is not responding to all the possible treatment options out in the market and nothing the physician can do to prolong her life, that’s when I would have to think about other possibilities. If there really is nothing that the physician can do, we

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