Physician-Assisted Suicide LEgalizing murder? or preventing personal suicide?

Is Physician-Assisted Suicide legalizing murder, or preventing personal suicide? If doctors do not agree, or cannot agree to fulfill these patients’ wishes, will the patients take it upon themselves to end their own life?

Physician-Assisted Suicide should be legalized upon the request of terminally ill patients, with consent of higher authority, with the intent to help by fulfilling the wishes of the terminally ill patient.

Physician-Assisted Suicide (PAS) is the act of ending one’s own life by lethal substances with the assistance of a physician.

People often mistake PAS for euthanasia, but in fact, the two differ. Physician-Assisted Suicide is performed by the patient and euthanasia is performed by the doctor (physician).

Typically, in Physician-Assisted Suicide, the doctor will explain any necessary information and provide the lethal substance to the requesting party, and the patient themselves will end their own life. In euthanasia scenarios, the doctor painlessly ends the suffering rather than the patient doing so.

A terminally ill patient, who is in a stable state of mind, should have the right to escape unbearable pain and hurry unavoidable death. Otherwise, they may take suicide upon themselves in more horrifying and traumatic ways to end their suffering.

But what about the patient's family and those they leave behind?

In 2009, a study was conducted in Oregon, where PAS had been legalized for over ten years. In this study they compared results to families who had lost a family member to PAS and to families who had lost a family member to naturally to a terminal illness (such as cancer). The results were pretty much the same, but one thing differed; the family who lost someone to Physician-Assisted Suicide felt more prepared and accepting of the death.

So the question remains. Should Physician-Assisted Suicide be nationally legalized? Should patients have the Right to Die, or will the needless suffering continue?
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