Abortion_and_Physician_Assisted_Sucide - Copyright(c 2006...

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Copyright (c) 2006 Loyola University New Orleans School of Law Loyola Journal of Public Interest Law Fall, 2006 8 Loy. J. Pub. Int. L. 45 LENGTH: 15851 words COMMENT: ABORTION AND PHYSICIAN-ASSISTED SUICIDE: IS THERE A CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHT TO BOTH? NAME: Carrie H. Pailet* BIO: * J.D. Candidate. Loyola University New Orleans College of Law; M.S.W., Tulane University School of Social Work, 2003; B.A., Psychology and Sociology, University of Texas at Austin, 1999. Thank you to Professor Stephen Higginson and Dr. Norton Spritz for their support and advice. Thank you to my family and friends for their steadfast encouragement and love. SUMMARY: ... Two areas of medical care that continuously encounter legal controversy, possibly because of their similarities, are abortion and assisted suicide. . .. Case law that evolves the "zone of privacy' concept into the right of personal autonomy with regard to medical decisions will be explored along with Oregon's Death with Dignity Act, as it is the United States' sole statute permitting physician-assisted suicide. . .. a recognition of the right of the woman to choose to have an abortion before viability and to obtain it without undue interference from the State[,] . .. a confirmation of the State's power to restrict abortions after fetal viability, . .. and . .. the principle that the State has legitimate interests from the outset of the pregnancy in protecting the health of the woman and the life of the fetus . .. . . .. An additional study regarding physician-assisted suicide and euthanasia in the Netherlands was performed in 2001 at the request of the Dutch government. . .. TEXT: [*45]
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I. INTRODUCTION The practice of medicine has drastically changed over the centuries. With technological advances in medical treatment, developing an illness, such as cancer, no longer means certain death. We are living longer, but our medical and technological developments have led our society down a path of complex questions with no correct answers. Our society, through law, has attempted to accommodate these complexities by placing stringent requirements on some decisions regarding healthcare while prohibiting others. Two areas of medical care that continuously encounter legal controversy, possibly because of their similarities, are abortion and assisted suicide. These issues have been explored and debated in government, newspapers, magazines, classrooms, prime time television shows and movies. American culture has played tug-of-war for centuries with the topic of abortion with zealous supporters flanking both sides of the issue. While assisted suicide has been a more recent subject of cultural fascination, the issue has already developed a following of supporters and naysayers. Both issues have legislation banning and regulating the procedures and both issues, abortion in particular, have helped and hindered the elections of many politicians based on the stance these candidates have taken in public forums. This article explores the evolution of abortion and assisted suicide, focusing on
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Abortion_and_Physician_Assisted_Sucide - Copyright(c 2006...

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