Euthanasia and end of life issues

Euthanasia and end of life issues - Access Connections.lnk...

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Unformatted text preview: Access Connections.lnk Lawrence M. Hinman, Ph.D. http://ethicsmatters.net 2/5/11 Lawrence M. Hinman http://ethics.sandiego.edu Decisions at the End of Life Lawrence M. Hinman, Ph.D. Professor of Philosophy Co-Director, Center for Ethics in Science & Technology University of San Diego Larry at EthicsMatters dot net 2/5/11 2/5/11 (c) Lawrence M. Hinman http://ethicsmatters.net 11 Access Connections.lnk 2/5/11 Lawrence M. Hinman http://ethicsmatters.net Introduction Increasingly, Americans die in medical facilities 85% of Americans die in some kind of health-care facility (hospitals, nursing homes, hospices, etc.); Of this group, 70% (which is equivalent to almost 60% of the population as a whole) choose to withhold some kind of life-sustaining treatment 2/5/11 Lawrence M. Hinman http://ethicsmatters.net 22 Access Connections.lnk 2/5/11 Lawrence M. Hinman http://ethicsmatters.net The Changing Medical Situation Until the 1940s, medical care was often just comfort care, alleviating pain when possible During the last 50+ years, medicine has become increasingly capable of postponing death Increasingly, we are forced to choose whether to allow ourselves to die. 2/5/11 Lawrence M. Hinman http://ethics.sandiego.edu 33 Access Connections.lnk 2/5/11 Lawrence M. Hinman http://ethicsmatters.net The Changing Insurance Situation Initially, the difficult was that physicians often wanted to do more to save the dying than either the dying or their families wanted The medical challenge Fear of lawsuits Now, the difficulty is that insurance companies and managed care may provide financial incentives for doing less for the dying than either they or their families want. Close to one-third of all Medicare dollars are spent on end-of- life care ( $50 billion dollars /year ) 2/5/11 Lawrence M. Hinman http://ethics.sandiego.edu 44 Access Connections.lnk 2/5/11 Lawrence M. Hinman http://ethicsmatters.net What are we striving for? Euthanasia means a good death, dying well. What is a good death? Peaceful Painless Lucid With loved ones gathered around 2/5/11 Lawrence M. Hinman http://ethics.sandiego.edu 55 Access Connections.lnk 2/5/11 Lawrence M. Hinman http://ethicsmatters.net Terri Schiavo The Terri Schiavo case is, so far, the most famous and notorious end-of-life case of the twenty- first century. 2/5/11 Lawrence M. Hinman http://ethics.sandiego.edu 66 Access Connections.lnk 2/5/11 Lawrence M. Hinman http://ethicsmatters.net The Schiavo Case: Sources of Uncertainty For the public, great uncertainty about what the actual facts of the case are ethical responsibility of the media For the family, uncertainty and disagreement about whether she was still there or not ethical responsibility of scienceespecially neurosciencesto shed light on the connections between brain conditions and personhood . We face two questions in cases such as this: Is Terri there?...
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Euthanasia and end of life issues - Access Connections.lnk...

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