Physician-Assisted Suicide and the Supreme Court: The Washington and Vacco Verdicts
Candilis, Philip J.
Appelbaum, Kenneth L.
Journal of the American Academy of Psychiatry and the Law. 1997; 25(4): 595-606.
In June 1997, the Supreme Court decided that statutes proscribing physicians from providing lethal medication for use by competent, terminally ill patients do not violate the Due Process or Equal Protection Clauses of the Constitution. The Court returned the question of physician-assisted suicide to the states, but did not foreclose future review of state laws that may be too restrictive of care at the end of life. The conceptual distinctions between assisted suicide, refusal of life-sustaining treatment, and administration of pain medication to terminally ill patients were endorsed as important guideposts for future analyses.
Advisory Committees; Allowing to Die; Assisted Suicide; Constitutional Law; Drugs; Due Process; Equal Protection; Euthanasia; Government; Intention; Involuntary Euthanasia; Law; Legal Aspects; Legal Rights; Life; Laws; Pain; Palliative Care; Patients; Physician's Role; Physicians; Public Policy; Regulation; Review; Right to Die; Rights; State Government; State Interest; Suicide; Supreme Court Decisions; Statutes; Terminally Ill; Treatment Refusal; Value of Life; Vulnerable Populations;
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