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practice of intentionally ending a life in order to relieve pain and suffering. There are different euthanasia laws in each country. The British House of Lords Select Committee on Medical Ethics defines euthanasia as "a deliberate intervention undertaken with the express intention of ending a life, to relieve intractable suffering". In the Netherlands, euthanasia is understood as "termination of life by a doctor at the request of a patient".
Like other terms borrowed from history, "euthanasia" has had different meanings depending on usage. The first apparent usage of the term "euthanasia" belongs to the historian Suetonius who described how the Emperor Augustus, "dying quickly and without suffering in the arms of his wife, Livia, experienced the 'euthanasia' he had wished for." The word "euthanasia" was first used in a medical context by Francis Bacon in the 17th century, to refer to an easy, painless, happy death, during which it was a "physician's responsibility to alleviate the 'physical sufferings' of the body." Bacon referred to an "outward euthanasia"—the term "outward" he used to distinguish from a spiritual concept—the euthanasia "which regards the preparation of the soul."
Classification of euthanasia
Euthanasia may be classified according to whether a person gives informed consent into three types: voluntary, non-voluntary and involuntary. There is a debate within the medical and bioethics literature about whether or not the non-voluntary (and by extension, involuntary) killing of patients can be regarded as euthanasia, irrespective of intent or the patient's circumstances. In the definitions offered by Beauchamp & Davidson and, later, by Wreen, consent on the part of the patient was not considered to be one of their criteria, although it may have been required to justify euthanasia. However, others see consent as essential. Voluntary euthanasia Main article: Voluntary euthanasia See also: Right to die
Luxembourg and the Netherlands. Active euthanasia Active euthanasia entails the use of lethal substances or forces. Passive euthanasia Passive euthanasia entails the withholding of common treatments. Missouri Department of Health. such as antibiotics. Examples include child euthanasia. Washington and Montana. the term assisted suicide is often used instead. non-voluntary and involuntary euthanasia can all be further divided into passive or active variants. Passive voluntary euthanasia is legal throughout the U. to kill and is the most controversial means. necessary for the continuance of life. such as administering a lethal injection. Involuntary euthanasia Main article: Involuntary euthanasia Euthanasia conducted against the will of the patient is termed involuntary euthanasia. Active voluntary euthanasia is legal in Belgium.Euthanasia conducted with the consent of the patient is termed voluntary euthanasia. states of Oregon.S. Procedural decision Voluntary. Assisted suicide is legal in Switzerland and the U. Involuntary euthanasia Main article: Involuntary euthanasia Euthanasia conducted against the will of the patient is termed involuntary euthanasia. per Cruzan v. which is illegal worldwide but decriminalised under certain specific circumstances in the Netherlands under the Groningen Protocol. . Non-voluntary euthanasia Main article: Non-voluntary euthanasia Euthanasia conducted where the consent of the patient is unavailable is termed non-voluntary euthanasia. Director.S. A number of authors consider these terms to be misleading and unhelpful. When the patient brings about his or her own death with the assistance of a physician.
who has been in a vegetative state for 37 years at King Edward Memorial Hospital.Euthanasia in India Passive euthanasia is legal in India. Elsewhere in the world active euthanasia is almost always illegal. including the administration of lethal compounds. Belgium and the Netherlands. and the deprivation of oxygen has left her in a vegetative state ever since. a sweeper. the court laid out guidelines for passive euthanasia. the court stated that its decision becomes the law of the land until the Indian parliament enacts a suitable law. as well as the US states of Washington and Oregon. but they are still illegal in India. and in most countries. Active euthanasia. She has been treated at KEM since the incident and is kept alive by feeding tube. The Supreme Court made its decision on 7 March 2011. On behalf of Aruna. including the administration of lethal compounds for the purpose of ending life. According to these guidelines. The decision was made as part of the verdict in a case involving Aruna Shanbaug. a social activist. including the withdrawal of nutrition or water. On 7 March 2011 the Supreme Court of India legalised passive euthanasia by means of the withdrawal of life support to patients in a permanent vegetative state. The Supreme Court's decision to reject the discontinuation of Aruna's life support was based on the fact the hospital staff who treat and take care of her did not support euthanizing her. The court rejected the plea to discontinue Aruna's life support but issued a set of broad guidelines legalising passive euthanasia in India. including Switzerland. is still illegal in India. passive euthanasia involves the withdrawing of treatment or food that would allow the patient to live. Main article: Aruna Shanbaug Case Aruna Shanbaug was a nurse working at the KEM Hospital in Mumbai on 27 November 1973 when she was strangled and sodomized by Sohanlal Walmiki. varies across the nations . During the attack she was strangled with a chain. her friend Pinki Virani. are legal in a number of nations and jurisdictions. The high court rejected active euthanasia by means of lethal injection. on the other hand. Forms of active euthanasia. filed a petition in the Supreme Court arguing that the "continued existence of Aruna is in violation of her right to live in dignity".  Supreme Court decision While rejecting Pinki Virani's plea for Aruna Shanbaug's euthanasia. In the absence of a law regulating euthanasia in India. The legal status of passive euthanasia.
Veerappa Moily. Moral/Theological: Some people. Competence can be difficult to determine or even define. 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. India's Minister of Law and Justice. the High Court can give its verdict. or in the absence of any of them. since the 1970s. such a decision can be taken even by a person or a body of persons acting as a next friend. It can also be taken by the doctors attending the patient. the correct action is sometimes considered to attempt to bring about a cure or engage in palliative care. Necessity: If there is some reason to believe the cause of a patient's illness or suffering is or will soon be curable. this oath has largely fallen out of use. the Supreme Court's guidelines are law until and unless Parliament passes legislation. the decision should be taken bona fide in the best interest of the patient. This view usually treats euthanasia to be a type of murder and voluntary euthanasia as a type of suicide. After hearing the parties. i.[3 . Feasibility of implementation: Euthanasia can only be considered "voluntary" if a patient is mentally competent to make the decision. called for serious political debate over the issue. as in various European countries. the morality of which is the subject of active debate. Even where health costs are mostly covered by public money. critics of voluntary euthanasia are concerned that patients may experience psychological pressure to consent to voluntary euthanasia rather than be a financial burden on their families.of the world." However. has a rational understanding of options and consequences. Even if a decision is taken by the near relatives or doctors or next friend to withdraw life support. However. The following guidelines were laid down: A decision has to be taken to discontinue life support either by the parents or the spouse or other close relatives. Reasons given against voluntary euthanasia Professional role: Critics argue that voluntary euthanasia could unduly compromise the professional roles of health care employees. When such an application is filed the Chief Justice of the High Court should forthwith constitute a Bench of at least two Judges who should decide to grant approval or not. Before giving the verdict a notice regarding the report should be given to the close relatives and the State. including many Christians.. who will give report regarding the condition of the patient.. As India had no law about euthanasia. voluntary euthanasia critics are concerned that hospital personnel would have an economic incentive to advise or pressure people toward euthanasia consent. such a decision requires approval from the High Court concerned. consider euthanasia of some or all types to be morally unacceptable.e. especially doctors. A committee of three reputed doctors to be nominated by the Bench. Consent under pressure: Given the economic grounds for voluntary euthanasia. They point out that European physicians of previous centuries traditionally swore some variation of the Hippocratic Oath.