Essay Title: 

Medical Law. Question: Critically examine whether the law does and/or should recognize that competent adults have the right to die.

April 3, 2016 | Author: | Posted in law


This work focuses on the legality of euthanasia in today ‘s society . In the sequel various case laws have been discussed . In several countries terminally ill patients are clamouring for euthanasia in to put a stop to their torment . There is however a great difficulty involved in obtaining death . The doctors and the courts are not taking cognizance of patients ‘ requests for euthanasia , but are deciding on their own as to which patient should be killed and when such a patient should be killed This death is generally by means of [banner_entry_middle]

withdrawing life support systems

There have been several demands for legalizing voluntary euthanasia and physician assisted suicide . Such demands have occurred all over the world . However , the European Court of Justice decided in the year 2002 that no EU Citizen had the right to die . Similarly , the US Supreme Court opined that no US Citizen had the right to die . This has resulted in individual countries having to deal with this problem on their own and a certain measure of acceptance is evident in the Netherlands , Japan Oregon and Columbia . In general , two arguments are put forward in support of euthanasia and physician assisted suicide , namely , the mitigation of the intolerable pain and discomfort caused by terminal illness and to enhance individual freedom . These two factors are taken into consideration by the government in to legalize euthanasia for example , in the Netherlands , where suffering has to be accompanied by a recurring request for mercy killing

Euthanasia is the process of bringing about an easy death . It refers to acts , which terminate or shorten life painlessly in to end suffering where there is no prospect of a cure . There are only two choices available to patients with fatal illness , either a slow death involving unrelieved suffering or euthanasia . Terminally ill patients suffer from depression or a false sense of unimportance , which tends to affect their judgment . Their decision-making may also be influenced by confusion or dementia , which could be lessened with suitable treatment It is very important to remember that , patients who on admission say ‘let me die ‘ usually after effective relief from symptoms are most grateful that their request was not acceded to . Terminally ill patients are also adjustable to a high level of disability as they value what little quality of life they have left

The legal position in respect of selective non-treatment was dealt with by the House of Lords in Airedale NHS Trust v Bland , in which the applicant , a health authority sought an to withdraw life-sustaining treatment and provide medical treatment that would enable a peaceful and dignified death with the minimum of pain . The family of the patient supported this application . The respondent 21-year-old Anthony Bland , had been in a persistently vegetative state for more than three years and though not brain dead , he had no cognitive function . The unanimous judgment of all the doctors who examined him was that there was no hope of a cure . Under these… [banner_entry_footer]


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