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Assisted Suicide - Pros and Cons

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Health care costs have skyrocketed over the past decade and as the ‘ baby boom generation’ ages, this problem will increase. It’ s a burden on everyone especially on the family that must pay it.   Elderly, terminal patients do not want to be responsible for the financial ruin of their children, but do not have the option to call for an end. “ Economic factors must be considered in terms of the patient, their families, and society. Patients may have depleted their insurance due to an extended illness, have no insurance and be a financial burden on their families.

Opponents to legal euthanasia rightly claim that the practice would be in violation of the Hippocratic Oath.   It also would cause a devaluation of human life.   Life is held as sacred in the U. S. more so than in many other countries, therefore, the decisions other countries make regarding euthanasia are not relevant.   The legalization could lead to the assisted suicide of patients whose conditions are not necessarily terminal.   If a minority of doctors can be convinced to prescribe illicit drugs then is not difficult to imagine a situation where a doctor can be convinced to assist in the suicide of a person who is temporarily depressed due to emotional or psychological reasons.   Insurance companies already have too much power to influence health care decisions.

  Legalized euthanasia would only increase this power. Another likely scenario of legal suicide involves patients who are told that they have a few months to live and decide to not endure this remaining time and end their life sooner rather than later.   This not only deprives family precious time with the patient but eradicates any chance of recovery or remission of the disease.   Plus, suppose the doctor made a mistake in their diagnosis?   No one could ever know if they did or didn’ t but this possibility would always weigh heavily on the minds of the loved ones left behind.   Another consideration is one of religion.   If a patient decides to depart this life expeditiously, many of his or her family members could be against this decision based on personal religious convictions.  

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