Last updated on: 1/7/2013 | Author:

Paul B. Young, MD, MA Biography

Con to the question "Should Euthanasia or Physician-Assisted Suicide Be Legal?"

“At the level of the society, physician assisted suicide is a threat to both the doctor and the patient. Illness renders a patient very vulnerable. Physically, mentally, and emotionally, they are at their weakest. Likewise, the physician, by virtue of his knowledge and skill, is in a relative position of strength. The patient must necessarily leave his or herself open bodily and often disclose the most intimate details of their life. The physician is given this privilege for the sole purpose of helping the patient wrestle with disease. There is an inherent imbalance of power in a therapeutic relationship between a doctor and patient than can never be eliminated. It is intrinsic to the nature of illness and treatment. Western medical ethics long ago recognized this vulnerability and imbalance and created safeguards to deal with it. Physicians are prohibited from exploiting patients financially or sexually. They are required to keep all that is told to them in absolute confidence. Above all else, the physician is prohibited from ever intentionally harming the patient. These safeguards serve to protect the patient, create the trust necessary to form a therapeutic alliance, and lastly assure that the physician will serve only the patient’s interest. Legislation promoting physician assisted suicide destroys this most important safeguard.”

  • “Against Physician Assisted Suicide,”, Apr. 8, 2008
Involvement and Affiliations:
  • Pediatrician, Dean Clinic, 2007-present
  • Pediatric Resident, University of Wisconsin Hospitals and Clinics, 1985-1988
  • Member, American Academy of Pediatrics
  • Member, Christian Medical and Dental Association
  • MA, Bioethics, Trinity International University, 2005
  • MD, University of Utah School of Medicine, 1985
  • BS, Zoology, University of Idaho, 1980
  • None found
Quoted in:
  1. Would Financial Motivations Encourage Insurance Companies and Health Care Providers to Promote Euthanasia and Physician-Assisted Suicide?