Should Euthanasia or Physician-Assisted Suicide Be Legal?

Proponents of euthanasia and physician-assisted suicide (PAS) contend that terminally ill people should have the right to end their suffering with a quick, dignified, and compassionate death. They argue that the right to die is protected by the same constitutional safeguards that guarantee such rights as marriage, procreation, and the refusal or termination of life-saving medical treatment.

Opponents of euthanasia and physician-assisted suicide contend that doctors have a moral responsibility to keep their patients alive as reflected by the Hippocratic Oath. They argue there may be a "slippery slope" from euthanasia to murder, and that legalizing euthanasia will unfairly target the poor and disabled and create incentives for insurance companies to terminate lives in order to save money.


[Editor's Note: We do not recommend or refer specific physicians, counselors, organizations, or other experts on end-of-life issues.] Euthanasia ProCon.org is a nonpartisan, nonprofit website that presents research, studies, and pro and con statements on questions about euthanasia and physician-assisted suicide and related end-of-life issues. Some people find our use of the phrase "physician-assisted suicide" inaccurate and inappropriate, and they suggest we use the phrase "physician aid in dying" instead. As of Feb. 26, 2018 Google showed 2.38 million results for "physician assisted suicide," 1.63 million results for "medical aid in dying," and 740,000 results for "physician aid in dying." In an effort to make our nonpartisan research accessible to the largest possible audience, we have used the more popular phrase "physician-assisted suicide." We do not mean to show support for or opposition to the practice by using the more common terminology.

PROS & CONS BY CATEGORY
CORE QUESTION

Definitions

Euthanasia in Practice

Legal Right and End-of-Life Documents

American Healthcare System

Physician Involvement in Euthanasia and PAS

Moral Differences in Forms of Assisted Dying

Historical Issues







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New ProCon.org Website! - Should Birth Control Pills Be Available Over-the-Counter?
2/21/2019 - Our new topic explores the pros and cons in the debate over making birth control pills available over-the-counter (OTC). 9.1 million women (12.6% of contraceptive users) use birth control pills, which are the second-most commonly used method of contraception in the United States. Proponents say making the birth control pill available over-the-counter would lower teen pregnancy rates, provide contraceptive access to medically underserved women, and ease access to a health-improving drug with decades of safe use. Opponents say making the Pill over-the-counter would raise the cost of contraception for women, pose a danger to teens' and women's health by removing the doctor's visit requirement, and limit what options are made available.

Our new website presents the top pro & con arguments and quotes, a history of the debate, a video gallery, the prescription status of birth control pills around the world, and a list of drugs switched from prescription to OTC status.

Archived Notices

Last updated on 1/28/2019 11:03:08 AM PST

Proponents of euthanasia and physician-assisted suicide (PAS) contend that terminally ill people should have the right to end their suffering with a quick, dignified, and compassionate death. They argue that the right to die is protected by the same constitutional safeguards that guarantee such rights as marriage, procreation, and the refusal or termination of life-saving medical treatment.

Opponents of euthanasia and physician-assisted suicide contend that doctors have a moral responsibility to keep their patients alive as reflected by the Hippocratic Oath. They argue there may be a "slippery slope" from euthanasia to murder, and that legalizing euthanasia will unfairly target the poor and disabled and create incentives for insurance companies to terminate lives in order to save money.

[Editor's Note: We do not recommend or refer specific physicians, counselors, organizations, or other experts on end-of-life issues.] Euthanasia ProCon.org is a nonpartisan, nonprofit website that presents research, studies, and pro and con statements on questions about euthanasia and physician-assisted suicide and related end-of-life issues. Some people find our use of the phrase "physician-assisted suicide" inaccurate and inappropriate, and they suggest we use the phrase "physician aid in dying" instead. As of Feb. 26, 2018 Google showed 2.38 million results for "physician assisted suicide," 1.63 million results for "medical aid in dying," and 740,000 results for "physician aid in dying." In an effort to make our nonpartisan research accessible to the largest possible audience, we have used the more popular phrase "physician-assisted suicide." We do not mean to show support for or opposition to the practice by using the more common terminology.

PROS & CONS BY CATEGORY
CORE QUESTION

Definitions

Euthanasia in Practice

Legal Right and End-of-Life Documents

American Healthcare System

Physician Involvement in Euthanasia and PAS

Moral Differences in Forms of Assisted Dying

Historical Issues

State-by-State Guide to Physician Assisted Suicide

Euthanasia and Physician-Assisted Suicide (PAS) around the World

Should All Americans Have the Right (Be Entitled) to Health Care?













Notices for Euthanasia and Other ProCon.org Information (archived after 30 days) rss icon
New ProCon.org Website! - Should Birth Control Pills Be Available Over-the-Counter?
2/21/2019 - Our new topic explores the pros and cons in the debate over making birth control pills available over-the-counter (OTC). 9.1 million women (12.6% of contraceptive users) use birth control pills, which are the second-most commonly used method of contraception in the United States. Proponents say making the birth control pill available over-the-counter would lower teen pregnancy rates, provide contraceptive access to medically underserved women, and ease access to a health-improving drug with decades of safe use. Opponents say making the Pill over-the-counter would raise the cost of contraception for women, pose a danger to teens' and women's health by removing the doctor's visit requirement, and limit what options are made available.

Our new website presents the top pro & con arguments and quotes, a history of the debate, a video gallery, the prescription status of birth control pills around the world, and a list of drugs switched from prescription to OTC status.

Archived Notices

Last updated on 1/28/2019 11:03:08 AM PST