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Ethical decision making is the process whereby a person is torn between decisions. Normally, decision making for this case is technical and that is the reason why the people involved are usually indecisive. In ethical decision making, settling for one decision will automatically affect the other one. This is normally ethics versus morals decisions. Arguably, morals change depending upon the society that the person is in at a certain time, however, ethics never changes. One of the common things under medical field that involves ethical decision making is euthanasia. Euthanasia is the voluntary killing of the patient since there are no signs of them becoming well or maybe they have suffered for a long time. This is a hard issue to decide on since the nurse might be against it but again they have to protect their profession.
This paper will critically analyze euthanasia. The paper will explain the issue of euthanasia broadly and then explain the pros and cons involving euthanasia.
As noted before, euthanasia is the voluntary killing of the patient with the aim of relieving them from the pain and suffering. This is usually carried out when the patient has been suffering for a long period and there are no signs of getting better (Husted and Husted 90). When there is such a situation, the family of the patient might ask the doctors and nurses to take away the life of the patient. This becomes an ethical dilemma to the nurses involved since they might have different opinion (M.Phil. 67). Despite the fact that the family of the patient are the ones who have suggested that euthanasia be carried out, the nurse involved might have a different opinion basing on her spiritual belief. Arguably, most Christians believe that only God gives and takes life and performing euthanasia is against God’s will. Moreover, they will remain indecisive since they also have to protect their profession. Nursing as a profession has its own rules, like the nurses should not rebel against the patients or the patient’s next of kin’s wishes. Due to this developing issue about euthanasia in the healthcare field, there have been debates on whether euthanasia should be legal or illegal. Basing on that, this essay will discuss the pros and cons of euthanasia below.
The Pros of Euthanasia
Firstly, voluntary euthanasia is vital since it helps the family of the patient to save funds for other needs. Normally, a person who ends up requesting for euthanasia is the one who has suffered for a long time and there are no signs of getting better. The long term suffering implies that a lot of money has been inputted in the health care to ensure that the patient gets well but he/she is not getting well. In other cases, the patient’s life might be supported by machines, especially when they are at the Intensive care unit. At the intensive care unit, the patient’s heartbeat is controlled by the machines and if they will be removed by any chance the patient will pass on. All these are expensive ways of ensuring that a person remains alive despite the fact that they are not getting better. However, if the patient or the patient’s family decides that the life should be terminated, the costs will be reduced and they would be used for other things.
Secondly, euthanasia is a better option since it reduces the suffering and pain that the patients undergo while being sick for a long time. Notably, euthanasia is normally done to the patients who have been suffering for a very long period without improving health wise. Moreover, the patients might have suffered for just a short period, but maybe they were badly hurt in an accident and they are in the intensive care unit. This is normally painful, especially when there are no signs of improvement. Due to this, it is better to reduce the pain and suffering of such patients and perform euthanasia on them.
Thirdly, every human being has a right to choose when they will die. In every country, the law states that every person has a right to choose what they think is good for them. This implies that the people even can decide on when they want to die so that they can die with dignity. Other people have their different opinion concerning death and this is the reason why euthanasia is supported (McDougall and Gorman 111). While some would prefer to fight on and suffer, others would prefer their life be cut short so that the pain might be ended. This is now where the law applies and the respect for the personal decision rule is followed. The person’s choice is the one to be followed by the medical care takers. When the patients demand for life termination, this should be done to them since it is their wish to die at that specified time.
The Cons of Euthanasia
Firstly, euthanasia devalues human life. Initially, it was noted that euthanasia is the killing of a person either voluntarily or involuntarily with the purpose of relieving pain from them. Arguably, this is devaluing human life. Human life is precious and should be valued since man was the only creature created in God’s own image. However, the argument that human life should be terminated when they are very sick is undervaluing human life. The human should be respected and left on his own even when they are extremely sick. If euthanasia is supported, there would be an increase in the death of the patients who are not even very sick since human life would not be respected and people would feel it is normal to kill the fellow human beings.
Secondly, euthanasia is morally incorrect simply because the Bible itself states that God is the one who gives and takes life. This phrase in the Holy Bible implies that since God is the one who created us, He is the only one to decide when we will die too. However, euthanasia is against this, since here it is a fellow human being who terminates another human being’s life. Arguably, the people who support euthanasia claim that they are terminating the pain that the person is undergoing. However, God is the one who plans for everything. This clearly indicates that He is the one to decide when the patient would die. Despite the fact that the patient might have suffered for many years and does not show the signs of getting well, God has power to revive the patient’s normal health only if he is patient. This affirms that whenever a person is sick, the relatives and the patients themselves should remain patient and seek medical attention without seeking other options that are against the Lord’s will.
Thirdly, euthanasia is expensive in comparison to taking care of the patient. Initially, it was argued that people choose to end the life of the patients mostly because the medical fee has gone high. This issue mostly arises when the subject patient is either under the intensive care or they have been sick for a very long time. However, it is evident that the medical care costs are lower than the euthanasia drug cost. Most people complain or assert that by performing euthanasia, that saved funds that would have been used for other purposes despite the fact that the euthanasia act itself is expensive (Tulloch 55). Basing on that, the relatives of the patients should opt for taking care of the patient even if they are in poor condition since the expenditure is almost equal and the initial decision is even against God’s will.
Moreover, voluntary killing is not the best option for a patient that is facing pacing. In most cases, people argue that euthanasia is the best option since the patient is undergoing pain suffering. Despite that, there is another better solution for the pain of the patient and that is pain relieving drugs. The pain relieving drugs will ensure that the patient feels better whenever they are in pain. This only needs the attention of the medical experts to ensure that the patient is given the best medication so that pain is relieved. With proper administering of the pain relieving drugs to the patients, pain would be reduced and they would be able to endure until the time when God will call them.
Personal Opinion on the Issue of Euthanasia
After this debate, my personal opinion about euthanasia is that it should not be embraced whatsoever. Notably, the most vital point is that euthanasia is against God’s will and this is even written in the Holy Bible. According to the Bible, God is the creator and He is the only one who gives and takes life. This clearly explains that euthanasia is against the will of God and that it should not be performed. When a person is sick, the best thing the family can do is support their patient and the medical personnel’s need to offer medication. Additionally, when the patient is undergoing pain, there is a better solution to that unlike euthanasia. The best solution for that case is providing them with pain relieving drugs.
As noted in the essay, euthanasia is one of the ethical decision making found in the healthcare field. This issue normally is faced by the nurses who are unable to either follow their beliefs or go as their profession requires them to do. In this matter, if the nurse decides to perform euthanasia, they would have gone against their religious belief that is against killing and if they rebel against the patient’s wishes, they risk losing their jobs.
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