20 Pages Posted: 6 Jun 2008
Date Written: June 2008
A review of the way physician-assisted suicide (PAS) is being addressed in the United States reveal three models, each functioning out of distinctive concepts of autonomy: (1) litigation, which utilizes philosophical autonomy; (2) legislation, which utilizes political autonomy; and (3) act of conscience by a physician, which utilizes consumer autonomy. Each model raises a correspondingly distinct set of ethical questions and challenges centered around their point of reference - the judicial system, voters, or the doctor-patient relationship. The challenge for religion is to address PAS in solidarity with sufferers, physicians, and the community, rather than retreating into iconoclastic dogmas.
Keywords: physician-assisted suicide, end-of-life decisionmaking, dying, ethical dilemmas, palliative care, religion and dying
JEL Classification: I10, I19, K10, K19
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation
Morgan, Rebecca C. and Sutherland, D. Dixon, Society's Search for a Legal and Ethical Basis of Physician-Assisted Suicide (June 2008). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1141216 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1141216