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Transcript of Euthanasia
-Why should Euthanasia be legal in Canada?
What is it?
not legal due to differing of opinions (whether right or wrong, ethical or not)
In survey, 75% of British Colombians and 77% of Quebecois support euthanasia.
House Of Lords stresses how it will complex the decisions physicians have to make
Medical Institutions state it will change the patient-physician relationship.
Euthanasia falls under the branch Symbolic Intercationism of Sociology
Advantages of euthanasia
- Respecting one's autonomy
- Reduces premature suicides
- Reduces life support reliance and modern technology
-Right to maintain human dignity
-Control of existing practices
-It provides a way to reduce pain
All forms of euthanasia are currently illegal in Canada but the topic is a legal dilemma
Matters dealing with life sustaining medical procedures are provincial matters
Euthanasia conducted where the consent of the patient is unavailable.
Euthanasia conducted against the will of the patient.
Voluntary euthanasia in which the intent is to cause the patient's death in a SINGLE act.
Voluntary euthanasia in which the physician is given the option to refuse prescription of futile drugs.
Many religions today have strong opinions on suicide and do not support euthanasia.
Human life is sacred, and not ours to dispose of as we feel
all life is of infinite value, regardless of its duration or quality, because it is made in the image of God
It is acceptable to ask God in prayer to remove a person from their suffering
All human beings are to be valued, irrespective of age, sex, race, religion, social status or their potential for achievement
Belgium: The Belgian parliament legalized euthanasia in late 2002 based on a nationwide survey that showed the majority of citizens in favor of it
Netherlands - euthanasia was made legal in 2002, under the Termination of Life on Request and Assisted Suicide Act
Luxembourg - enacted legislation to legalise euthanasia in 2009
The patient must be experiencing unbearable pain.
The patient must be conscious.
The death request must be voluntary.
The patient must have been given alternatives to euthanasia and time to consider these alternatives.
There must be no other reasonable solutions to the problem.
The patient’s death cannot inflict unnecessary suffering on others.
There must be more than one person involved in the euthanasia decision.
Only a doctor can euthanize a patient.
Great care must be taken in actually making the death decision
Active euthanasia is illegal in all aforementioned countries
Case Study # 1
"I am dying, piece by piece, and I am asking the mercy of the court to allow me to die with dignity,"---Gloria Taylor (June-2009)
Taylor was diagnosed with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis in late 2009, when she was 63. She learned that the disease would gradually leave her paralyzed and in constant pain, and that she would likely die within a year.
Case Study # 2
"I will give no deadly medicine to anyone if asked, nor suggest any such advice"
Euthanasia is contradictory to the ethics presented by the oath!
Many doctors who have participated in euthanasia are adversely affected emotionally and psychologically by their experiences.
7 "Mercy Killings:" Cases in which parents felt their children had experienced enough suffering and murdered them or alleged to have assisted in their suicide.
5 "Mercy Killings:" Cases in which a spouse alleged their spouse had experienced enough suffering
8 Cases involved either doctors, nurses or nurse's aids.
“Euthanasia is an act that requires two people to make it possible and a complicit society to make it acceptable.” - D. Callahan
The cost of euthanasia is less than the cost of life support and medical supervision
Disadvantages of euthanasia
-Sufferers might make the wrong decision
- Reduction in efforts to find cure
- Euthanasia promotes suicides
-The Wedge or Slippery Slope.
-Undiagnosed clinical depression
"Killing the patient, not the pain"
For the majority of patients, the demand for euthanasia disappears when they are provided proper medical support
"Giving patients the right to die means giving doctors the right to kill"
"Euthanasia is legal in three countries worldwide: Belgium, Luxembourg, and the Netherlands."
"We'll all die. But in an age of increased longevity and medical advances, death can be suspended, sometimes indefinitely, and no longer slips in according to its own immutable timetable. "
"People don't usually want to die. People are usually eager to avoid death because they value being alive, because they have many things they wish to do, and experiences they wish to have."
"It is cruel and inhumane to force me to suffer a long, prolonged death," Taylor said. "It is my life, my body, and it should be my choice."
Taylor died on October 4, 2012, due to a severe infection resulting from a perforated colon. Taylor did not need to seek the assistance of a physician to end her life. In the end, Gloria’s death was quick and peaceful. Taylor died in hospital, with her mother and a close friend by her side
What are the illnesses or disorders for which euthanasia or assisted suicide may be possible ?
The origin of the terminal state of health referred to in the Law of 16 March 2009 is not important. The patient’s health problems may result from any disorder which gives rise to unbearable physical or mental suffering.
Foreign experience shows that the majority of cases involve advanced cancers or neuro-muscular illnesses with terminal paralysis, but it could be any severe, incurable and irreversible disorder which meets the legal conditions.
Questions to discuss
1- Do you think Euthanasia should be legal?Why or why not?
2- Is it right to keep those who are suffering from terminal pain alive?