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What is meant by euthanasia?

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Introduction

Euthanasia The term 'Euthanasia' comes from the Greek word for 'easy death'. It is the one of the most public policy issues being debated about today. Formally called 'mercy killing', euthanasia is the act of purposely making or helping someone die, instead of allowing nature to take its course. Basically euthanasia means killing in the name of compassion. Another meaning given to the word is "the intentional termination of life by another at the explicit request of the person who dies." That is, the term euthanasia normally implies that the person who wishes to commit suicide must initiate the act. Euthanasia can be 'voluntary', 'passive', 'active', or 'positive', Voluntary involves a request by the dying patient or their legal representative. Passive Euthanasia: Hastening the death of a person by altering some form of support and letting nature take its course. For example: 1) Removing life support equipment (e.g. turning off respiratory) 2) Stopping medical procedures, medication etc. 3) Stopping food or water and allowing the person to dehydrate or starve to death. 4) Not delivering CPR (cardio-pulmonary resuscitation) and allowing a person whose heart has stopped to die These procedures are performed on terminally ill, suffering persons so that natural death will occur sooner. It is also done on persons in a Persistent Vegetative State - individuals with massive brain damage who are in a coma from which they cannot possibly regain consciousness. ...read more.

Middle

Some are severely depressed over a long interval. To them, suicide may be a "permanent solution to a temporary problem." There is a better solution for most clinically depressed people is treatment, using counseling and/or medication. Such treatment can give to the person decades of enjoyable life which would have been lost if they committed suicide. 2) They live in excessive, chronic pain. Some, due to poverty or lack of health-care coverage cannot afford pain-killing medication. Others are denied adequate painkillers because of their physician's lack of knowledge, inadequate training, or specific beliefs. There is a consensus that suicide in this case is not a preferred solution; a better approach is proper management of pain through medication. 3) They have a terminal illness and do not want to diminish their assets by incurring large medical costs as their death approaches. As an act of generosity, they would rather die sooner, and pass on their assets to their beneficiaries. 4) A serious disorder or disease has adversely affected their quality of life to the point where they no longer wish to continue living. 5) They have lost their independence and must be cared for continually. Some feel that this causes an unacceptable loss of personal dignity. 6) Some are concerned about the future and want to have suicide available as an option. ...read more.

Conclusion

" Ms Nigot wrote in her final statement. "I am terminating my life now because I want to have control over my death." Another headline 'Canadian man says he killed disabled daughter out of mercy'. TORONTO (January 18, 2001 6:23 p.m), A farmer sentenced to 10 years in prison for killing his severely disabled daughter said Thursday that he doesn't regret killing her. "I have said I could lie in a dirty old jail cell easier than she could lie on the floor, suffering like she was," said Robert Latimer, who admitted to piping exhaust fumes into his pickup to kill his 12-year-old daughter. A ruling Thursday by Canada's Supreme Court effectively sends Latimer to prison, ending seven years of legal limbo. So, should we allow people the choice of when they die? The debate about euthanasia props up all the time, even when it is not publicised, it is still happening secretly all the time. As an issue euthanasia refuses to die. Everyone has their own opinion on it, with many people wanting to see a change in the law. This issue needs a lot of thought. Many people agree with voluntary euthanasia, many disagree but there is also a large amount of people undecided on the matter. The time will come when the Government and medical services will have to open their eyes to euthanasia, and there will be a lot of debate on the subject. Until then the euthanasia debate will continue to linger, like a terminal disease. ...read more.

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