Talking Points (Euthanasia)
- Social acceptance of physician-assisted suicide sends the message that some lives, especially those of elderly, disabled and dependent citizens, are not worth living.
- The practice of physician-assisted suicide creates a duty to die. Death may become a reasonable substitute to treatment and care as medical costs continue to rise.
- Better medical alternatives exist to physician-assisted suicide. Today's pain management techniques can provide relief for up to 95 percent of patients, thus offering true death with dignity.
- Physician-assisted suicide often ignores depression, a legitimate cry for help.
- Physician-assisted suicide gives too much power to doctors, threatening patient autonomy by allowing physicians to decide whether a patient lives or dies.
- The practice of physician-assisted suicide threatens to destroy the delicate trust relationship between doctor and patient – a relationship based on the patient's belief that his or her physician will pursue the goal of protecting life.
- Physician-assisted suicide opens the door to euthanasia.