Thursday, June 08, 2006

Euthanasia

In the Guardian today: "One of the country's leading experts on medical ethics today calls for doctors to be able to end the lives of some terminally ill patients "swiftly, humanely and without guilt" - even if they have not given consent. Len Doyal, emeritus professor of medical ethics at Queen Mary, University of London, takes the euthanasia debate into new and highly contentious territory. He says doctors should recognise that they are already killing patients when they remove feeding tubes from those whose lives are judged to be no longer worth living. Some will suffer a "slow and distressing death" as a result. It would be better if their lives were ended without this unnecessary delay, Professor Doyal writes in an article in Clinical Ethics, published by the Royal Society of Medicine. He calls for the law and professional guidance to be changed."

I hope this issue is widely debated. One of the guarantees of a civilized and technologically advanced society should surely be the right to die a dignified and - whenever it's possible - a painless death in the presence of a terminal illness. Shouldn't pointless prolonged suffering and distress be avoided at all costs?

Why is the discussion of death - a certainty to us all and to all whom we hold dear - so much of a taboo ?

1 comment:

Rauf said...

I still feel that there should be a dignified end to the suffering.
I have taken a promise from a doctor friend to end my life when I am suffering in the end.

He calls me sometimes and says shall I come and end your life today ?