Should people be prosecuted for helping patients to die with dignity? Essay

The modern world is full of sufferings and torture. Current diseases which are very often irremediable make people’s life intolerable, steal the sense of life and strongly encourage death. Even with the modern technology and rapid development of medicine, this still does not provide the likelihood to save people’s life. In the light of this situation, euthanasia or also known as assisted suicide is of importance. However, whenever the phrase ‘assisted suicide’ is used, many believe that it should be illegitimate. But when ‘death with dignity’ is used instead, support from the society increases greatly. No matter what, the whole idea remains the same. It is the practice of ending an individual’s life in order to free them from unbelievable pain. Should an individual have the option to end his or her life on own terms? Yes, as a compassionate individual, we must conclude that the terminally ill should be given the green light to euthanasia. But, those helping the terminally ill to end their lives, are condemned as inhumane and immoral and should be brought to court to be prosecuted. The prosecution of these people have been a major topic among society. But what the society misunderstood is that the choice of euthanasia was not chosen by them but the terminal patients themselves. This is because they are unwilling to endure the pain, reduce the financial burden of their families and to die with dignity. However, religious and moral values have opposed to this view.

Technology in the medical field has achieved many remarkable milestones, especially in protracting the lives of humans. For patients who have a better chance of surviving, this technology is the greatest gift to the human race. For people who are living with a terminal illness, or that are in an irreversible coma, however, it is just adding on their pain, distress and hardship. This is peculiarly true when they reach the end of their battle. Medicine is supposed to eliminate the pain and yet it gives the terminally ill more pain and agony as day passes by. The pain can be deliberating, and the only option for these people is to take copious amounts of drugs. For example, Velma Howard, a 76 years old female who was afflicted with ALS (Lou Gherig’s Disease), asked her family to assist her to die because the quality of her life was becoming less and less each day. Assisted suicide is the best mode for them to end the suffer caused by an illness which cannot be cured by medicines. Euthanasia gives them a way to stop theirs and their family’s suffering. With the patient’s consent, their families help in the process of euthanasia in order to stop the insufferable pain. Because of this, they should not be prosecuted by the courts.

A terminally ill patient’s hardships can be most unbearable to their family. This is because of the high price of medicines and medical treatments and they use a large portion of the funding available. With every day that he or she is kept, the costs rise. The cost of keeping a terminally ill patient at a hospital has been estimated as ranging from 2000 to 10000 dollars a month. This shows that only the rich terminal ill patients can afford this price and continue to receive proper medical treatment. As for those who can barely afford it, the cost of their lives is left to their families’ hands. Many families do not consider the cost when their loved one is still living. However, when the terminal patient pass away, this is when they realize they have bills to pay which can lead to a huge financial debt, At the same time, they do not wish to see their beloved ones to suffer and made the choice to die with dignity, They want to save their families from the expenses of keeping them alive and ease their families’ financial burden. Thus, the families do not have any wrongs to receive punishment for assisted suicides.

Furthermore, a terminal patient who is bed ridden and sick is at the mercy of their families, nurses and medical staff for doing things like moving, taking baths, eating and changing clothes. Many people do not want to be a torment and remembered by their loved ones in such a way. On 10 December 2016, Sandra Barclay escorted her husband who was diagnosed with the degenerative multiple sclerosis in 1992, to a Dignitas flat in Switzerland so that he did not have to endure the pain for another 10 years that was predicted by his doctors in the UK. According to the patient himself who has spent at least three years in a wheelchair, everything he does has to be assisted by his wife. With help from family and a whooping amount 10000 pounds, Andrew took a lethal mixture of prescription drugs and passed away. Nobody wants to be at the mercy of anybody else. They want at least to leave this world peacefully and to die with dignity. This helps to put people back in control of their own life which matters the most. It gives people a great sense of peace and hope for their family. Euthanasia is always done under the patient’s approval. Their families do not make this choice for them but honour their wish. Hence, they should not be punished for helping their loved ones.

On the other hand, it is believed that religious, moral and ethical values must take importance. Death should come naturally as it is meant to be. This means that those who are involved in helping the terminally ill should be prosecuted. Religions believe that all life is sacred and should be kept at all cost. Those religions see euthanasia as murder and murder is against religious beliefs and also the laws of the countries. It is viewed as one of the ultimate sins against God. This shows that assisted suicides and murder are explicitly forbidden in some religions. Thus, families members and others who help terminal patients to die with dignity should be brought to court. This is so that the value and sanity of life will not lose its significance.

In conclusion, courts should not prosecute those people involve in assisting a terminal patient to die with dignity. This is because he or she makes his or her decision to pass away at their own will. By helping them, we are giving them the opportunity to choose when they die and how they die which means let them take control of their own life and the ability to say what they want to say or do before their death. Giving a dying patient the opportunity for a peaceful and dignified death is not a suicide and should not be considered as a murder. Instead, it should be seen as a absolute necessity in emergencies which relieve them of unbearable pain.

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