The controversial act known as the physician aid-in-dying (PAD) challenges us to question our ethical, religious, and cultural values or beliefs. Although it is tragic and perceived as morally inappropriate, suicide is sometimes the only answer. In certain cases this act is a way to end excruciating pain and suffering. The state of Oregon passed a law known as the Death with Dignity Act in 1994. PAD is defined as “a practice in which a physician provides a competent, terminally ill patient with a prescription for a lethal dose of medication, upon the patient's request, which the patient intends to use to end his or their own life” (Braddock, and Tonelli). PAD also raises the question, is it a constitutionally guaranteed right for people to
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These terminally ill bed ridden patients as well as their families are forced to deal with the trauma. At some point we are all going to die, but with advances in medicine and medical technology people are living longer than ever. We are prolonging the lives of terminally ill patients who would have long since passed away. Cutting-edge medicine is providing longer life spans, but also inducing tragedies which include the loss of liberties such as bathing, eating, and other freedoms. “One consequence of successful vaccines and antibiotics, of course, is an increase in current life expectancy to over 75 years of age. Yet, while we now live longer we also have more sickness and morbidity” (Campbell 128-134). This form of treatment is to help those who are caught in the middle of treatment, who aren’t getting any better.
PAD is a respectful solution for terminally ill patients who wish to choose their own timing and manner in which they die. PAD is a right, not a privilege; every competent person capable of making their own decisions should have the freedom to determine the time and manner in which they expire. PAD gives us hope that if we ever become terminally ill that we will have the option to die with dignity. Terminally ill patients that are suffering, suffer from more than just