Physician-assisted suicide is a non-issue for most MDs

CanadianHealthcareNetwork.ca

Dr. Shawn Whatley

For most doctors, physician-assisted suicide will not change almost anything in day-to-day practice. It will happen away from the mainstream of care, available but not obvious. Doctors will want reassurance that neither patients nor caregivers get coerced but beyond that, most physicians will not get passionate either way.

Doctors usually avoid social activism. As a group, they support social movements but rarely create movements of their own.

Doctors agree on one moral absolute: Thou shalt not express a moral opinion about the behaviours, beliefs or decisions of thy patient. Everyone is a potential patient. Ergo, doctors should not express opinions about anyone’s choice. Society expects this—demands this—of its doctors. Modern medical trainees learn objectivity before all else. . . [Full Text]

 

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