Physician-Assisted Dying: Theory and Reality
Meier, Diane E.
Journal of Clinical Ethics. 1992 Spring; 3(1): 35-37.
...[T]here appears to be a conflation of physician-assisted suicide (the doctor makes the means of suicide available by, for example, writing a prescription for barbiturates) with active euthanasia (the doctor actively intervenes to kill the patient). I believe that these two entities are quite distinct in terms of several factors: they require very different roles for the physician, they involve distinct and disparate power relationships between physician and patient, and they would likely have a substantially different impact on the ethos of the medical profession. Thus, I would argue that it may be reasonable to support easing constraints on physician-assisted suicide while retaining them for active euthanasia, and that the distinction between the two entities should be addressed, particularly in discussions of legalization.
Active Euthanasia; Allowing to Die; Assisted Suicide; Capital Punishment; Conscience; Ethics; Euthanasia; Killing; Medical Ethics; Moral Obligations; Moral Policy; Physician's Role; Physicians; Policy Analysis; Public Policy; Punishment; Power; Religion; Suffering; Suicide; Terminally Ill; Utilitarianism; Values; War;