Is Assisted Suicide Ethically Justified

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Is Assisted Suicide Ethically Justified? Chriss N. Thomas Philosophy of Ethics Dr. John Schmitz February 8, 2012 The choice a terminally ill patient makes should be available to them in the event they no longer want to suffer. According to Dame Jill Macleod Clark, who sits on the Council of Deans of Health, states “those who have cared for terminally ill patients, friends or family know their greatest fears and anxieties are about intractable sufferings, and their desire for a dignified and peaceful death” (2011). When patients who are terminally ill want to hear options the argument has been made that all options are not available because assisted suicide comes with scrutiny and consequences. On the other hand opponents of assisted suicide do not believe this is the only way to secure a good health alternative. Opponents believe that it is important to make a patient feel comfortable and help them improve their quality of life not end life just because it is an option or that they may feel they are a burden to loved ones. Assisted suicide can be performed by a physician or a person who is willing to help a patient end their life. This paper will focus on physician assisted suicide (PAS), this has been a controversial issue in many countries and have many different opinions on the ethics behind assisted suicide. To further examine the data the utilitarian ethics approach will be used. It is important to remember that utilitarian ethics considers the consequences of actions. Indentify the Problem: Assisted suicide is it ethical or unethical? Is it right for a physician to assist a patient to kill themselves? This is the main focus of assisted suicide and the justification of the situation has been at debate for a long time. The problem is if a physician assists a patient with suicide how are they holding up the oath they took as a doctor. Doctors are
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