Academic Master

Education, English

Death With Dignity Act

Under what circumstances is it legal in Washington State for someone to request assisted dying? Do you think there are adequate safeguards in place? Why or why not?

Death with dignity is a pattern in which the law provides an opportunity for people to meet with death on their terms. Many states in the US offer this opportunity to patients who are suffering from severe diseases and are terminally ill. Washington State, DC, is one of these states that are providing this opportunity to die with dignity in the form of an act. Washington State Act allows the residents of the state, who should be adults, to request lethal doses of medication from a doctor. Only terminally ill patients are allowed to request Death with Dignity and are allowed to end their lives through proper medication processes. These adults should have six or less than six months to live their lives (“Death with Dignity Act: Washington State Department of Health,” 2018).

Why do people explore this option? What are the effects of legalizing this option? How often is this option utilized, and by whom? Use the data from both Oregon and Washington.

People who are suffering from terminal illnesses are allowed to explore this option. The doctor should declare terminal illness and the patient does not have any sign of improvement. Several patients in the hospitals are suffering from severe terminal illnesses, and they are silently waiting for their death. So, it is a good option to legalize the death of these patients who are in pain, and there is nothing someone can do for them. Washington, DC, enacted the Act of Death with Dignity in 2009, whereas Oregon enacted this act in 1997 (Oregon Health Authority, 2016). Both states allow patients suffering from terminal illnesses to request Death with Dignity, and the doctors will write them lethal doses of medications so that they can die with their will and end their suffering of pain.

What topic did you choose to learn more about, and what did you learn? Please include a link and reference to the source. Were there any controversies raised? Were there differences in what the article and the documentary reported?

I decided to learn more about the topic “Death with Dignity” or “Assisted Suicide.” I have explored countries other than the United States that are offering this opportunity to their patients and allow them to die of their own will. It includes Switzerland, the Netherlands, Columbia, and Belgium (“Assisted Suicide Laws Around the World – Assisted Suicide,” 2015). I have learned and analyzed that “Death with Dignity” should be allowed all over the world but under certain securities, laws, and implementations. In the documentary, it is shown that many organizations that are working for the “Right to die” include several people on their list who are not terminally ill and just want to be dead (The Suicide Plan, 2012). It is a serious social issue in which people who are suffering from pain and terminal illness are allowed to end their lives. But not the ones who want to commit suicide. The laws of “Death with Dignity” should be implemented but always under critical conditions, in which only the patients who are terminally ill and the doctors issue their report of illness are allowed to take advantage of the law.

What is your reaction to studying this topic? What are your beliefs and feelings about death and dying, and how were your perspectives informed? Did the reading and documentary change your perspective? If so, in what way(s)? Feel free to share any personal experiences you have with death and dying, although you are not obligated. You may wish to also discuss your fears and concerns about facing end-of-life issues personally and for your loved ones.

My reaction is in favor of this law, and I am positive that patients with terminal illnesses should have the right to end their lives because they are going to be dead soon. So, why do they live only to wait for their death? It’s even painful to imagine this situation. I realized that it is good for these patients that they are allowed to have medications and peacefully die, rather than to keep them alive, and they only have to suffer the pain and wait for their deaths. The documentary and the related material are helpful in determining what is happening in the world and what are the scenarios in which this social issue is happening. I just thought that If any of my relatives, a friend, or my sibling had to face this situation, then what would be my reaction? I am the one who does not want their suffering, and I cannot imagine that they only have to wait for their death due to their terminal illness. It is painful for me to end their lives, but it is not painful for those who are suffering. If they want to end their lives peacefully, I will surely help them because I love them, and I want their peace, not their painful condition.

References

Assisted Suicide Laws Around the World – Assisted Suicide. (2015). Assistedsuicide.org. Retrieved 7 March 2018, from https://www.assistedsuicide.org/suicide_laws.html

Death with Dignity Act: Washington State Department of Health. (2018). Doh.wa.gov. Retrieved 7 March 2018, from https://www.doh.wa.gov/YouandYourFamily/IllnessandDisease/DeathwithDignityAct

Oregon Health Authority. (2016). Retrieved from http://www.oregon.gov/oha/ph/ProviderPartnerResources/EvaluationResearch/DeathwithDignityAct/Documents/year18.pdf

The Suicide Plan. (2012). Retrieved from https://www.pbs.org/wgbh/frontline/film/suicide-plan/

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