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Department
Philosophy
Course
PHLB09H3
Professor
Chad Horne
Semester
Winter

Description
In euthanasia and physician assisted suicide the bioethical heart of the matter is the moral rightness of killing or letting die for the good of the patientEuthanasia Euthanasia can be characterized as directly or indirectly bringing about death of another person for the persons sake The term derives from the Greek words meaning good death and evokes the idea that causing or contributing to someones end may bestow on that person a good Death is usually considered an evil perhaps the greatest evil but many think it can be a blessing if it spares someone from a slow horrific dying or a hopeless vegetative sleepActive Euthanasia It involves performing an action that directly causes someone to die what most people think of as mercy killing Giving a patient a lethal injection to end his suffering is a case of active euthanasiaPassive Euthanasia Allowing someone to die by not doing something that would prolong life It includes removing patients feeding tube or respirator failing to perform necessary surgery and refraining from giving life saving drugs Active euthanasia is killing but passive euthanasia is letting diePassive euthanasia may be moral but active euthanasia is not Many argue that there is no moral significant difference between mercifully killing a patient and mercifully letting the patient die In both situations the doctor causes the patients death by either intentionally doing something in the one instance or intentionally refraining from doing something in the orderVoluntary euthanasia Refers to situations in which competent patients voluntarily request or agree to euthanasia communicating their wishes through instructions to be followed if they become incompetent Nonvoluntary euthanasia Refers to when patients are not competent to choose death for themselves and have not previously disclosed their preferences In these circumstances the patients family physician or other officially designated persons decide for the patientInvoluntary euthanasia Refers to bringing about someones death against her will or without asking for her consent while she is competent to decide
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