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Physician Assisted Suicide

First of all, the question arises, what is physician assisted suicide?. It can also be called as aided dying. Physician assisted suicide is the suicide committed with the aid of physician, who counsels lethal drugs, prescribes them and sometimes provides them. This term, Physician assisted suicide (PAS), is often confused with the term 'euthanasia' which differs from Physician assisted suicide in the sense that euthanasia is the suicide administered by physician without prior permission of the patient while in physician assisted suicide, aid to commit suicide is requested by the patient and the patient is aided after his satisfactory consent. Physician assisted suicide is often named as "compassionate dying", "end of life choice", "dying with dignity".

There are so many reasons due to which a person decides to commit suicide aided by physician. The reasons may include fears about quality life, negative past experiences, fear of being a burden on others, economic hardships associated with costs of health care, loss of independence, having long-standing beliefs in favor of hastened death, depression, hopelessness & socioeconomic stresses.

The supportive arguments for physician assisted suicide are all based on emotions & they gain power because our health care systems & its practices leave many people suffering unreasonably at the end of life. One of the most strongest supportive argument is that everyone has freedom of choice, every single individual has the right to decide whether he wants to live or die. In other words, to live or to die is to be decided by the person with complete freedom. Patients may favor physician assisted suicide because they no longer want to live artificially prolonged lives through expense, painful or delibitating treatments. They no longer wish to be a burden on others and they find it hard to live independently and happily. Taking all these arguments in view, One ends up with the decision of committing aided suicide.

As we know, whenever there are supportive arguments, there are arguments that negate the statement equally. So, the first negative argument is that why does the patient end up deciding to commit aided suicide? it's all because of the improper treatment of the physicians. People favoring physician assisted suicide are unaware that they are leading towards a creation of world without love and care. Aided suicide asks too much of the loved ones, as it's difficult to let our loved ones die by their own choice. Physician assisted suicide humiliates the dignity of mankind. Some terminally ill people may recover and get well soon. Use of will power may prove beneficial in recovering from illness then why make a decision to end life even when we have other choices?. Most importantly, Assisted suicide of one individual gives societal approval to commit suicide, it doesn't respect the laws and therefore, increases teen suicide rate. Another negative argument is that doctors are for healing wounds not for giving pain. It's strange how a physician, a person who by profession helps people get relief from pain aids them in committing suicide, seems a bit cruel.

Summing up, there are many arguments which approve the statement and many others which deny the statement. Supportive arguments having emotional basis talk about freedom of choice while negative arguments go for the religious reason. But I neither support physician assisted suicide neither go against it. I think decisions should always be made on the basis of circumstances. Whatever a patient decides, must be on the basis of circumstances. All what matters is to make a decision which is enough supported.

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