Doctor Assisted Suicide

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The traditional practice of sustaining life by doctors and medical practitioners has recently been in question by Canadian parliament and media. Although the health care system in the United States differs, the Oregon Death with Dignity Act has demonstrated success in maintaining regulations in the practice and has been reviewed by other institutions. (Haigh). Therefore, similar legislation should be introduced in Canada, allowing physician-assisted suicide, a form of euthanasia. The legalization of a similar act would improve the quality of life of terminally ill patients, preserve tissues for organ donation and follow the ethical practices of doctors in deciding treatments.
A reduced quality of life is associated with patients diagnosed with degenerative or incurable diseases, as advances in medical treatment ultimately extend a predicted life expectancy (Canada. Social Affairs and Population). In a cross-sectional survey, quality of life and loss of independence were the main reasons for physician-assisted death requests in Oregon (Gazini, Goy, and Dobscha). The diagnosis of Nigel Pratten with Huntington’s disease caused limitations in daily routines and therefore was reasoning for his suicide, “it's not the life I want, I cannot go out with my friends, can't draw, can't do what I want to do. What have I got left?" (Somani). The inability to preform daily tasks was due to the involuntary movements and worsening of cognitive functions characterized by Huntington’s disease, as evident in Pratten’s diagnosis, as he frequently choked and his legs collapsed, therefore limiting social outings, the ability to draw and overall independence. Diagnosed with a terminal brain tumour, Dr. Donald Low publically countered oppositions to lega...

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... Web. 18 Mar 2014. http://www.unckidneycenter.org/25facts.pdf

Somani, Kiran. "Helping your son to die." Student BMJ (2001): 203. Academic OneFile. Web. 18 Mar. 2014. http://go.galegroup.com/ps/i.do?id=GALE%7CA76879618&v=2.1&u=ko_k12hs_d50&it=r&p=AONE&sw=w&asid=7425685f159b65f5e12d47569b1bdb34 "Organ Donation." - The Kidney Foundation of Canada. N.p., n.d. Web. 24 Apr. 2014.

Canada. Social Affairs and Population. Euthanasia and Assisted Suicide in Canada. Martha Butler, Marlisa Tiedemann, Julia Nicol, and Dominique Valiquet. N.p., n.d. Web. 24 Apr. 2014. .

Symons, Xavier. "Euthanased Patients a New Source of Organ Donations in Belgium." BioEdge N.p., 7 Sept. 2013. Web. 24 Apr. 2014. .
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