Philosophy Of Ethics And Assisted Suicide Philosophy Essay

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Assisted suicides have debates of certain moral issues for terminating another person's life. The review of the paper is to identity those moral issues of assisted suicide along with possible solutions which could be morally correct or in some views of others may not be so morally correct, the opinions could be different depending on the view points. The results are to come up with a solution that both sides could agree upon to be the best solution, and the best interest of the patient.

Patients who are on life-support or who are terminally ill with no foreseen out coming of recovery are not being giving their rights with the help of medical staff in all States to terminate their lives if they choose, and medical staff who assist in these suicides do not have legal protection from legal ramifications for assisting in these suicides.

Identify the Problem

The problem is that life-support can be removed if there is prior consent from that patient who has requested to not be resuscitated if needing life-support. That physical must honor that patient's wishes which would be considered "euthanasia" which would allow death to happen since that person was at the terminal point without any hopes of recovery. That physician would not be legally responsible for performing that euthanasia but if that same physician was asked by a terminally ill patient that was still alive not on any life-support but with no foreseen hope of recovering from the illness to sign a permission then that physician, that would be considered "assisted suicide" and by laws that physician would be prosecuted, and charged with criminal homicide (Rady & Verheijde, 2010) What makes one different from another in the service that is being provided by the physician? The physician has consent from both parties, the only different is that the patient on life-support is at the point that death is presently closer that the other person who is not on life-support. The dilemma is that the physician is performing the same act on both patients and is at different periods of the patient's life span. What makes one different from the other in terms that both are being terminated to some extent? The physician is only being prosecuted for the other which is deemed.

Clarify Concepts

The key terms that is the concepts which will be seen in this review are PAS which means "Physician-Assisted Death" and Life-support treatments. (Rady & Verheijde, 2010) PAS is described as the intention use to accelerate the dying process or wishes of a patient who does not wish to extend life, or cause unnecessary financial responsibility to family members. Life-support treatments is the use of support of medical devices to support vital functions organs of the body (Rady & Verheijde, 2010)

Identify Possible Solutions to the Problem-Side A

Identifying possible solutions to the problem to help make morally sound decision one could be a government national database which can be accessed by all health care professionals, and within the United States. This database while accessed by health care professionals will view a person wishes if having to be placed on life-support. These wishes will be signed by the patient and will be a legally binding agreement. This agreement will take in place of if that same patient is in a car accident and needs to be on life-support. The database can be accessed to see that the patient has a "DNR" which is do not resuscitated on that patients information(Rady & Verheijde, 2010) No waivers would be needed to be signed since, the database list the patient's wishes. There could be a sticker placed on that patients driver licenses to also let that heath care professionals know that this is the patient's wishes, but the database would still need to be checked for verification. Government involvement for this and along with television campaigning nationwide would be the best way to get the word out. Another solution if the database would not be an option would be for the government to define what would life defended as a life threaten circumstance that a patient would be able to request to terminate life. This fine line has not been determine except by rule that the government.

Identify Possible Solutions to the Problem Side B

A solution that would not be acceptable or morally practical, this would allow consent forms to be signed by the patients at anytime to make the decision on whether terminating that patients life should be allowed. This would be the situation of having to determine by the government what would be acceptable to the physician to not be liability for assisting in the termination of the patients' life. For this to work a great deal of variables have to be met to insure that this would become a legal medical practice. This very difficult as many in government and certain areas of influence, do not appeal lightly to those person's that have the power to put something of this magnitude in motion. Thus, this would require complete agreement in working with government, and local officials to agree to make this work.

Gather Information

The information needed to understand and analyze the problem with assisted suicide is to have all the information and to know the distinction between patients who are physician-assisted death and allowing the patient to die (Rady & Verheijde, 2010) There is just as importance for knowing the equipment that is used in supporting the patients when they are not able to support a body function. There are also the roles that each medical person plays within that patient's cycle of life. These roles determine how the last days this patient will spend, and many of the medical profession have great respect for their comfort. As caregivers that is the most important thing they want to do, is to provide loving, caring, service to the patient and the families involved.

The thing that is important to understand when analyzing the opposing views is the backgrounds on these groups that are opposing blocking the assisted suicides. What is the driving force that is making the decision is it religious background, political background that is making the decision, then knowing why would determine the reasoning, and how to understand why the other side has such a strong opposing view on assisted suicides.

The moral reasoning when reviewing against assisted suicides there are many that have religious backgrounds that believe that religion prohibits the use of assisted suicide. The reasoning behind this when analyzing the facts is that it violates the Establishment Clause (Rubin, 2010). This means that in terms it is unconstitutional due to the fact context that did contact historical religious laws did exist in the culture, and throughout the past centuries religion, laws have been something that co-existed sometimes working in harmony, while in other times bringing war at other times. Since, this has existence this is a moral reason for not wanting assisted suicides being allowed at this current time, and that humans serve a higher purpose that just to subject to suicide which was thought to be a selfish act for a human to take the easy way out of dealing with problems (Rubin, 2010) There are Christian thinkers that have a strong belief that people have this moral obligation to be alive, and take life as it comes good or bad (Rubin, 2010). This type of ethical thinking would be considered the natural law ethical theory which takes the law into account which could be religious as they would develop the true, and good in a person as it was assigned by god (Waller, 2008). It is having the knowledge along with the comprehension for the ethical thinking to understand the ways of the religious thinkers, and how their comprehension of certain area (Waller, 2008).


The consequences of having a nationwide database could be a benefit to many in the health care profession. The reason for this benefit is that the database would be on a nationwide network which would allow for access if a patient lived in Michigan, and traveled to California and was hospitalized in California due to an accident which may require the question of whether that person should or should not have life support, and what that patients wishes that are to be followed (Byock, 2010). This network would be on a volunteer basis so that if that person either due to religious beliefs would not have to participate in the database. This would hopefully help in keeping the religious community in a position to work with the database instead of working against the database but, the chances are most likely not going to happen since, religion has a strong indication against assisted suicides which has to be respected for their beliefs. There may be high backlash from the political, and religious community since, the database is nationwide. The outcome was to have a database that can be functional and serve as a vital tool in helping determine the proper procedures for medical staffing in using, and a benefit to the legal system to not have to prosecute physicians for doing the right thing for the patient who is terminally ill or even more become involved in a major lawsuit from the families of that deceased individual when the paperwork is already signed, and dated and is the database to be verified by the medical staff when needed. This would also help the government in promoting better relationship with people, and showing a type of "goodwill" towards trying to solve a problem that appears to be very deep into discussion on both sides that either oppose assisted suicide, or agree that assisted suicide must be an option for everyone who wants it within reasons.


The moral issues appear to be one that has to be one that has to be viewed by two big entities to be considered something that a database would be useful in helping know the exact wishes of someone who is terminally ill, and who is wishing to use assisted suicide as a way to end their suffering, and to end the suffering emotionally, financially to the love ones that are left after that patient has deceased. The issue still is not solved even with the database on what is considered "terminally ill" when a person is ill but not at the point that they will not be able to fully recover (Cornock, 2010). The database would lesser the lawsuits and gives medical physicians along with medical staff a clear understanding of their rights. The views of religion are something that has been a subject of hot topic that appears to be something that will not easily change which is an opinion that has to be respected. Their views have been from past beliefs, and with political views there are chances that opinions will change since their views and opinions can listen to reason, with wanting to have the best interest of the people to which the politicians service. There are moral issues to assisted suicide which has a vast coverage from one side of opinions to another. When analyzing the opposing views it was easy to see that more than just opinions was a decision in why or why not assisted suicide is morally correct, background and other information comes into play.

The thing that is important to understand when analyzing the opposing views is the backgrounds on these groups that are opposing blocking the assisted suicides. What is the driving force that is making the decision is it religious background, political background that is making the decision, then knowing why would determine the reasoning, and how to understand why the other side has such a strong opposing view on assisted suicides. These views may one day be united to help get one understanding of assisted suicides.