Accepting physician-assisted suicide is a slippery slope. The American Medical Association believes it is wrong for doctors to kill. Let’s stick by that belief.
The American Medical Association House of Delegates in Chicago will soon engage in a critical debate over the report of the AMA’s Council on Ethical and Judicial Affairs concerning the practice of assisted suicide. For almost 30 years, pro-assisted suicide organizations have been lobbying for legalized assisted suicide throughout the USA. This practice involves a physician prescribing a non-FDA approved lethal overdose of drugs to a person believed to have a terminal illness.
In 2016, the AMA charged the CEJA with reevaluating the AMA’s ethical position, issued in 1994, in opposition to the legalization and practice of assisted suicide. The current AMA position states that assisted suicide “is fundamentally incompatible with the physician’s role as healer, would be difficult or impossible to control, and would pose serious societal risks.”
In its May report, after two years of exhaustive study, having considered published literature and written and oral testimony from many participants on all sides of the debate, CEJA concluded that no change in the AMA’s ethical code or language used to describe assisted suicide is warranted.
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