physician assisted suicide

Stories that Matter

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Yesterday’s New York Times featured a beautiful piece titled “The Wisdom of the Aged,” where six elderly New Yorkers were followed and profiled over the course of a full year. The article captures their hopes, their struggles, and their daily routines as they live out their lives in their eighties and nineties—and while each of […]

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This Week in Bioethics

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1. European Parliament Condemns Surrogacy This week the European Parliament condemned surrogacy—delivering a huge victory for women and children. In their statement, the EP concluded that surrogacy “undermines the human dignity of the woman since her body and its reproductive functions are used as a commodity.” We hope that policy makers around the world will […]

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This Week in Bioethics

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1. Assisted Suicide Law Now in Effect in Quebec Quebec’s assisted suicide law went into effect yesterday. According to the Minister of Justice, the law is aimed at “allowing people at the end of their lives to receive care that respects their dignity and their autonomy.” It’s both strange and tragic how suicide—normally condemned and […]

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Euthanasia is Incompatible with Palliative Care

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Since 2002, the Belgium government has aimed to provide “palliative care for all” as a part of its healthcare services. On the surface, this sounds like a laudable goal and one that should be encouraged. But, as a new report from the European Institute of Bioethics reveals, the Belgian government’s understanding of euthanasia as a […]

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Why We’re Thankful

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If you follow our work closely, you might be tempted to think that those of us who work for the CBCN are merely messengers of doom and gloom. Since our work deals with ethics at the edges of life—particularly birth and dying—we’re often sounding the alarm on urgent issues in hopes that the world will […]

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Suicide and Social Contagion

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In a recent Washington Post opinion piece, Dr. Aaron Kheriaty chronicled suicide’s social contagion effects—and what this means for debates surrounding physician assisted suicide. Dr. Kheriaty, a professor of psychiatry at the University of California Irvine and a board member of the Center for Bioethics and Culture Network, discussed two social phenomenas that provide insight […]

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This Week in Bioethics

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1. Couples Pursuing Surrogacy in India Now in Limbo Due to India’s recent ban on international commercial surrogacy, a number of foreign couples in process of utilizing an Indian surrogate are scrambling. Some have frozen embryos they are trying to have shipped to their respective countries, while others have surrogates that are already in the […]

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This Week in Bioethics

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1. Germany Approves Physician Assisted Suicide Last Friday the government of Germany passed legislation that would regulate assisted suicide in the country. The new law will prevent the commercialization of the practice, but it will allow terminally ill patients to end their lives with the aid of a doctor. For a country whose recent history […]

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The New Brittany Maynard–A Real Hero

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Remember Brittany Maynard? The twenty-nine year old woman who moved from California to Oregon last year to utilize their physician assisted suicide law. She ended her own life at age 29 and as a result, California went on to legalize the practice in the state. A similar story is now being played out in New York […]

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This Week in Bioethics

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1. New Medicare Rule Authorizes End of Life Consultations Last Friday the Obama administration issued a final rule that requires Medicare to pay physicians for end-of-life consultations. On its face, there is nothing necessarily harmful about this—and, indeed, many physicians and patients will benefit from this, as will families who will have an opportunity to […]

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Physician Assisted Suicide is Inconsistent with National Efforts to Reduce Suicide

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Yesterday’s New York Times featured a haunting portrayal of suicide in America. Across the nation, suicide rates are on the rise—particularly among rural adolescents. But, as the article highlights, “suicide is a threat not just to the young. Rates over all rose 7 percent in metropolitan counties from 2004 to 2013, according to the Centers […]

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This Week in Bioethics

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1. India Bans Foreigners from Hiring Surrogate Mothers The Indian government delivered a huge win to women and children this week by announcing they would issue a ban on foreigners hiring Indian women as surrogate mothers. Unfortunately, the practice will still be available for Indian couples, but this move is a major step in the […]

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Physician Assisted Suicide Proponents Fail to Recognize that We’re All Vulnerable

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Most proponents of physician assisted suicide argue that the practice should be legalized in order to respect individual autonomy when it comes to end of life decision making, but that such laws should also safeguard against vulnerable individuals, such as those with suicidal tendencies, that may be at increased risk. As bioethicist Margaret Somerville astutely […]

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This Week in Bioethics

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1. Australian High Court Rules BRCA1 Gene Cannot Be Patented The Australian High Court has issued a final ruling that the BRCA gene cannot be patented. Mutations of the BRCA1 gene often lead to higher risks of breast cancer and other cancers. This ruling overturns two lower level court rulings but follows similar rulings in […]

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This Week in Bioethics

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1. American Surrogate Mother Dies On October 8th, Brooke Lee Brown of Burley, Idaho died of complications from a surrogate pregnancy. Shortly thereafter, the two twins she was carrying for a couple in Spain, where surrogacy is illegal, also passed away. To date, there’s been a media blackout. No major outlets are reporting on this […]

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To Defeat Physician Assisted Suicide, Go on the Offensive

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As we’ve previously warned, Governor Jerry Brown’s decision to sign physician assisted suicide into law in California will not stop there. Consider just a few of the headlines in recent days: Connecticut’s Hartford Sentinel: “Suicide Should Never Be Sanctioned by the State” Pennsylvania’s Observer-Reporter: “PA Should Join California on Assisted Suicide” International Business Times: “Advocates […]

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This Week in Bioethics

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1. California Governor Signs Physician Assisted Suicide Law On Monday, Governor Jerry Brown signed California’s physician assisted suicide bill into law—stating that he would like to have the option if he were terminally ill. This decision is both selfish and reckless, and undermines the entire profession of medicine, which is aimed at healing and has […]

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Fallout from Physician Assisted Suicide

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As we’ve already alerted you, earlier this week Governor Jerry Brown signed California’s physician assisted suicide bill into law. Now we can only wait for the fallout to begin—as is well documented in places like Oregon and Washington where the practice is already legal. In his statement in response, CBC Board Member Dr. Aaron Kheriaty observed, “Governor […]

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