Suffering and Dignity in the Twilight of Life

B. Ars, Etienne Montero
Kugler Publications, 2004 - 180 páginas
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This book is intended for everyone, but in particular for caregivers who are in the front line of the problem regarding the end of life and euthanasia. By presenting a critical analysis of the debate from a multidisciplinary perspective, the aim of this work is to provide a positive message about the therapeutic relationship at the end of life. Far from presenting an impenetrable tome or encyclopedia on the subject, our goal was to provide food for thought with sufficient information presented in what we hope to be a sober, thoughtful, and pedagogical manner. Thus, we have chosen not to discuss numerous very interesting questions that would have been beyond our goals. You will not find anything in the following pages about the etymology or history of the term 'euthanasia', or about the religious point of view, medical codes of ethics, opinions of national ethics committees, or even about the laws of countries where euthanasia was legalized before being outlawed (Australia), or is being seriously considered, sometimes in a bill that is already before parliament. In these pages, we are hoping to achieve a multidisciplinary book which will be regarded as a synthesis, offering a serene and positive vision of the end of life. The book is divided into three parts: the first, written by various physicians and a nurse, describes the different medical approaches to the 'end of life' now in existence, as well as possible treatments against pain and suffering. The second part, written by lawyers, provides a critical analysis of existing legislation in the only countries/states that have legalized euthanasia or assisted suicide: the State of Oregon in the USA, The Netherlands, and Belgium. The third and final part is a philosophical reflection on the dignity of the 'end of life' and places euthanasia in its anthropological, ethical, and sociopolitical context.

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Página 34 - An unpleasant sensory and emotional experience associated with actual or potential tissue damage, or described in terms of such damage'.
Página 99 - Everyone's right to life shall be protected by law. No one shall be deprived of his life intentionally save in the execution of a sentence of a court following his conviction of a crime for which this penalty is provided by law.
Página 100 - Deprivation of life shall not be regarded as inflicted in contravention of this Article when it results from the use of force which is no more than absolutely necessary : (a) in defence of any person from unlawful violence ; (b) in order to effect a lawful arrest or to prevent the escape of a person lawfully detained; (c) in action lawfully taken for the purpose of quelling a riot or insurrection.
Página 147 - ... heaven for which he lives. And the true realism, always and everywhere, is that of the poets: to find out where joy resides, and give it a voice far beyond singing.
Página 100 - No one shall be subjected to torture or to inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment.
Página 104 - Court's established case-law, the notion of necessity implies that the interference corresponds to a pressing social need and, in particular, that it is proportionate to the legitimate aim pursued; in determining whether an interference is "necessary in a democratic society...
Página 144 - The tragic personage is broken by forces which can neither be fully understood nor overcome by rational prudence.
Página 149 - Is there one word which may serve as a rule of practice for all one's life?" The Master said, "Is not RECIPROCITY such a word? What you do not want done to yourself, do not do to others.
Página 144 - Tragic drama tells us that the spheres of reason, Tbrder, and justice are terribly limited and that no progress in our science or technical resources will enlarge their relevance.
Página 75 - Inform the patient of: (a) his or her medical diagnosis; (b) his or her prognosis; (c) the potential risks associated with taking the medication to be prescribed; (d) the probable result of taking the medication to be prescribed; (e) the feasible alternatives, including, but not limited to, comfort care, hospice care and pain control.

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