Euthanasia

Euthanasia - Euthanasia 10/25/2010 Three-end-of-life...

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Euthanasia 10/25/2010 Three-end-of-life practices Passive euthanasia person is dying from illness so withdraw or withhold life sustaining treatment Active euthanasia intentional administration of a lethal substance to bring about death Physician-assisted suicide suicide by ingesting a substance provided by a physician leading to patient’s death Chart in slide on blackboard Law and legal factors Patient self-determination act (1991) Outcome of line of cases in 1970’s and 1980’s concerning removal of life support from patients in PVS See: I n re Karen Quinlan, 70 N.J. 10 1976; Cruzan v. Director, Missouri Department of Health, 497 U.S. 261, 1990 Chose that patients have to be notified of their rights, including the right to refuse treatment and right to have an advance directive follow if in vegetative state Oregon Death with Dignity Act (1997) Passed into law after a referendum (60% to 40% in favor) In order to qualify: Must be 18 y.o. or up; Oregon resident; diagnosed with a terminal illness that will lead to death within 6 months Patient must made 2 oral and 1 written (witnessed) request(s) Prescribing physician and consulting physician must agree that the patient is competent Patient must be informed of alternatives Washington Death with Dignity Act Outcome of public initiative; voters supported by approx. 60% to 40% in the vote in Nov. of 2008 elections Enacted into law March 5 2009 BOTH OREGON AND WASHINGTON ACTS CONCERN PHYSICIAN ASSISTED SUICIDE NOT ACTIVE EUTHANASIA U.S. Supreme Court addressed bans on Physician-Assisted Suicide in two cases Washington v. Glucksberg , 521 U.S. 702, 1997 Vacco v. Quill , 521 U.S. 793, 1997 Court ruled that there is not constitutional right to die and ruled that both Washington/New York ban on PAS do not
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violate the Equal Protection Clause of the 14 th Amendment Gonzalez vs. Oregon, 546 U.S. 243, 2006 Ashcroft ordered Federal drug agents to arrest physicians participating in PAS in Oregon saying they were violating the controlled substances act Lower Courts ruled in Oregon’s favor and so did Supreme Court CSA does not allow the “Attorney General to prohibit doctors from prescribing regulated drugs for use in (PAS) under State law permitting the procedure.” American opinion about euthanasia and PAS In a survey in 2007 71% ay that YES Euthanasia is okay and 27% said it is not ok even though it is illegal When asked if the doctor can assist the patient to commit suicide only 56% said YES it is ok and 38% said that it was NOT ok Planning for the end of life Living will/advance directives statement of your wishes regarding the provision of life-sustaining treatment, including the use of resuscitation, ventilators, feeding tubes, etc… Durable power of attorney for health care decisions you specify a person who will act as your agent if you are unable to make
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Euthanasia - Euthanasia 10/25/2010 Three-end-of-life...

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