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Barbu Alexandra
Grupa: II B3

Profesor: Tereza Nitisor


The right to die vs. the right to life At first, What is euthanasia? Euthanasia is a painless and peaceful death. Its subdivided in two different parts. The first one is the passive euthanasia what means that you stop to prolong a life when the measures are too big. Then the doctors, or the relatives, decide if some of these things could be practised.

The second one is the active euthanasia. It is also called the mercy killing and means that the painful life of a person which is suffering with unbearable pain gets finish with one of these things. Euthanasia in the Netherlands On the 10. April 2001 the Netherlands has become the first country in the world where euthanasia is formally allowed. The law is the outcome of more than 30 years of political, religious and social discussion. An overwhelming majority of parliament approved the voting from the bill. Ninety percent of the Dutch population was in favour of such a form of voluntary death, and the Royal Dutch Medical Association also welcomed the law. Its members had been campaigning for a legal framework for euthanasia for years. Until the law came out into force, doctors performing euthanasia worked in a legal grey area, never knowing whether they would be prosecuted or not. Fact is that your request for euthanasia can only get approve when you have unbearable suffers with no prospect of improvement. The doctor must agree that the patients condition is very bad. In some individual cases it is very difficult to decide something like that for a doctor. But the review committee, which where occupied with the topic, Examines each individual case whether the doctors decide is the right one. Also you cant request for euthanasia isnt positive when the doctor things that there is another alternative treatment. But in some cases this could be very objective. So the doctor has to try to imagine what the patient is feeling and make a decision in his or her mind. When a patient has a psychological illness and his or her suffering is not caused by a physical suffer it is very difficult for a doctor to decide if euthanasia can be practise or not. In such cases the doctor must consult another doctor witch must be a psychiatrist and they had to talk to the person very often about this topic so that the thoughts of the two doctors agree. Then also a court has to decide whether this plea is justified or not. Another question is if euthanasia can performed in cases of dementia. The fact that a person has dementia is not in itself a reason for euthanasia. But for some people the prospect of getting dementia and loosing there own personality and there dignity of man is so frighten, that there will not live a life like that in the future. Then they can talk to there doctor and when this situation happened the doctor can try to make a medical decision in the name of the patient. But not only old people and adults can request euthanasia. Also minor can request euthanasia when they have an illness which is associate with unbearable suffering with no prospect of improvement. The Act allows twelve to fifteen- year- olds to request euthanasia, but only with the agreement form their parents or their guardian. When the minor are sixteen or seventeen years old they could make their decisions by themselves, but their parents must be involved in the discussion about that.


Euthanasia (from the Greek eu = good + thanatos = death) refers to the practice of ending a life in a painless manner. Many different forms of euthanasia can be distinguished, including animal euthanasia and human euthanasia, and within the latter, voluntary and involuntary euthanasia. Voluntary euthanasia and physicianassisted suicide have been the focus of great controversy in recent years. Euthanasia by means Euthanasia may be conducted passively, non-actively, and actively. Passive euthanasia entails the withholding of common treatments (such as antibiotics, chemotherapy in cancer, or surgery) or the distribution of a medication (such as morphine) to relieve pain, knowing that it may also result in death (principle of double effect). Passive euthanasia is the most accepted form, and it is a common practice in most hospitals. Non-active euthanasia entails the withdrawing of life support and is more controversial. Active euthanasia entails the use of lethal

substances or forces to kill and is the most controversial means. An individual may use a euthanasia machine to perform euthanasia on himself / herself. Assisted suicide is a form of euthanasia where the patient actively takes the last step in their death. The term "assisted suicide" is contrasted with "active euthanasia" when the difference between providing the means and actively administering lethal medicine is considered important. For example, Swiss law on assisted suicide allows assisted suicide, while all forms of active euthanasia (like lethal injection) remain prohibited. Some jurisdictions declare that a person dying as a result of physician assisted suicide does not commit suicide. This ensures that terminally ill people choosing assisted suicide options do not have reduced insurance claims compared to people dying in "natural" way. For example, the Oregon Death with Dignity Act defines that "... participation under the Act is not suicide, so should not affect insurance benefits by that definition. Europe In 1957 in Britain, Judge Devlin ruled in the trial of Dr John Bodkin Adams that causing death through the administration of lethal drugs to a patient, if the intention is solely to alleviate pain, is not considered murder even if death is a potential or even likely outcome. In 1993, the Netherlands decriminalized doctorassisted suicide, and in 2002, restrictions were loosened. During that year, physician-assisted suicide was approved in Belgium. Belgium's at the time most famous author Hugo Claus, suffering from Alzheimer's disease, was among those that asked for euthanasia. He died in March 2008, assisted by an Antwerp doctor. Reasons given for voluntary euthanasia:

Choice: Proponents of VE emphasize that choice is a fundamental principle for liberal democracies and free market systems. Quality of Life: The pain and suffering a person feels during a disease, even with pain relievers, can be incomprehensible to a person who has not gone through it. Even without considering the physical pain, it is often difficult for patients to overcome the emotional pain of losing their independence. Economic costs and human resources: Today in many countries there is a shortage of hospital space. The energy of doctors and hospital beds could be used for people whose lives could be saved instead of continuing the life of those who want to die which increases the general quality of care and shortens hospital waiting lists. It is a burden to keep people alive past the point they can contribute to society, especially if the resources used could be spent on a curable ailment.

Reasons given against voluntary euthanasia:

Professional role: Critics argue that voluntary euthanasia could unduly compromise the professional roles of health care employees, especially doctors. They point out that European physicians of previous centuries traditionally swore some variation of the Hippocratic Oath, which in its ancient form excluded euthanasia: "To please no one will I prescribe a deadly drug nor give advice which may cause his death.." However, since the 1970s, this oath has largely fallen out of use. Moral: Some people consider euthanasia of some or all types to be morally unacceptable. This view usually treats euthanasia to be a type of murder and voluntary euthanasia as a type of suicide, the morality of which is the subject of active debate. Theological: Voluntary euthanasia has often been rejected as a violation of the sanctity of human life. Specifically, some Christians argue that human life ultimately belongs to God, so that humans should not be the ones to make the choice to end life. Orthodox Judaism takes basically the same approach, however, it is more open minded, and does, given certain circumstances, allow for euthanasia to be exercised under passive or non-aggressive means. Accordingly, some theologians and other religious thinkers consider voluntary euthanasia (and suicide generally) as sinful acts, i.e. unjustified killings. Feasibility of implementation: Euthanasia can only be considered "voluntary" if a patient is mentally competent to make the decision, i.e., has a rational understanding of options and consequences. Competence can be difficult to determine or even define. Necessity: If there is some reason to believe the cause of a patient's illness or suffering is or will soon be curable, the correct action is sometimes considered to attempt to bring about a cure or engage in palliative care. Wishes of Family: Family members often desire to spend as much time with their loved ones as possible before they die. Consent under pressure: Given the economic grounds for voluntary euthanasia (VE), critics of VE are concerned that patients may experience psychological pressure to consent to voluntary euthanasia rather than be a financial burden on their families. Even where health costs are mostly covered by public money, as in various European countries, VE critics are concerned that hospital personnel would have an economic incentive to advise or pressure people toward euthanasia consent.

Euthanasia and the Law During the 20th Century, efforts to change government policies on euthanasia have met limited success in Western countries. Country policies are described here in alphabetical order, followed by the exceptional case of The Netherlands. Euthanasia policies have also been developed by a variety of NGOs, most notably medical associations and advocacy organizations.

In EU only Belgium and Netherlands legalizes euthanasia in 2002 in some special conditions. Countries like France or Italy forbid it, but authorize an assisted form of deth. Any kind of euthanasia or form of assisted deth is denied in Romania, Greece or Poland. In Switzerland, a doctor can give a patient which is in ultimate faze of the illness and whishes to die, a deadly measure of medicine. The patient will take the medicine by himself. SURSA: Human Rights and Euthanasia Euthanasia, or voluntary assisted suicide, has been the subject of much moral, religious, philosophical, legal and human rights debate in Australia. At the core of this debate is how to reconcile competing values: the desire of individuals to choose to die with dignity when suffering, and the need to uphold the inherent right to life of every person, as recognized by article 6(1) of the ICCPR. Several legislative attempts have been made to legalize euthanasia in parts of Australia. However, at present, it remains unlawful. One of these attempts was the Rights of the Terminally Ill Act 1995 (NT), which allowed for medically assisted voluntary euthanasia at the request of a terminally ill person. This Act is discussed in Human Rights and Euthanasia, an occasional paper which examines the relationship between euthanasia and international human rights law (see below). Shortly after this paper was published, the federal Parliament made Rights of the Terminally Ill Act 1995 (NT) inoperative by amending the Federal Parliament of the Northern Territory (Self-Government) Act 1978.