Synopses & Reviews
If it comes to choosing between methods of last resort for severely suffering, physician-assisted suicide will probably prove more acceptable as a method of last resort than active euthanasia both to patients, to legislators and to the general public. From the perspective of patients, physician-assisted suicide is a more unambiguous expression of the patient's autonomous will. From the legislator's perspective it seems less liable to misuse and abuse. And often the availability of assisted suicide, instead of shortening the life of a patient, has proved to prolong it. Public policy has begun to respond to this prospect. Notably in Switzerland and Germany, the attitudes of public bodies towards physician-assisted suicide are in a process of change, partly motivated by the wish to take the edge off the pressure for legalisation of active euthanasia. The present volume focuses on public policy issues related to physician-assisted suicide. It offers a detailed analysis of the current legal standing and practice of physician-assisted suicide in various countries and discusses the ethical principles underlying its legal and professional regulation. In addition, it contains a number of personal narratives by professionals who have for many years been involved in end-of-life issues.
From the reviews: "This book examines the many facets of physician-assisted suicide from an international perspective with contributions from a variety of authors ... . The audience includes a broad array of readers, spanning academics, practitioners, and even lay people. ... This is a superb and insightful book, with wide appeal. It is highly useful for those with an interest in the physician-assisted suicide debate. ... this is a valuable contribution to anyone's library, especially those concerned with the legal fight for physician- assisted suicide." (Jason Lesandrini, Doody's Review Service, May, 2008)
Public policy surrounding the hotly debated issue of physician-assisted suicide is examined in detail. You'll find an analysis of the current legal standing and practice of physician-assisted suicide in several countries. Authors discuss the ethical principles underlying its legal and professional regulation. Personal narratives provide important first-hand accounts from professionals who have been involved in end-of-life issues for many years.
Table of Contents
Preface;Dieter Birnbacher & Edgar Dahl;I. Physician-Assisted Suicide and Public Policy;Physician-Assisted Suicide and Public Policy-Gerald Dworkin;Slippery Slopes and Physician-Assisted Suicide -Neil Levy ;Physician-Assisted Suicide and the Medical Associations-Dieter Birnbacher;Safe, Legal, Rare? Physician-Assisted Suicide and Cultural Change in the Future-Margaret Pabst Battin;Palliative Options of Last Resort: A Comparison of Voluntarily Stopping Eating and Drinking, Terminal Sedation, Physician-Assisted Suicide, and Voluntary Active Euthanasia-Timothy E. Quill, Bernard Lo & Dan W. Brock;II. Physician-Assisted Suicide - An International Perspective;Physician-Assisted Suicide in Oregon-Linda Ganzini & Edgar Dahl;Physician-Assisted Suicide in the Netherlands and Belgium-John Griffiths;Physician-Assisted Suicide and the German Criminal Law-Gabriele Wolfslast;Physician-Assisted Death. An Australian Perspective-Alan Rothschild;Assisted Dying: The View from the United Kingdom-Sheila A. M. McLean; III. Physician-Assisted Suicide - Narratives from Professional and Personal Experience;Physician-Assisted Suicide: A Doctor's Perspective-Pieter Admiraal;Medically Assisted Suicide in Switzerland-Elke Baezner-Sailer;The European Convention on Human Rights Protects the Right of Suicide-Ludwig A. Minelli;