The term Medical Assistance in Dying MAiD involves the administration of medication

The term Medical Assistance in Dying (MAiD), involves the administration of medication to safely and intentionally end the life of a person. In June 2016, the Supreme Court of Canada ruled that patients who are grievously suffering are legally entitled to request ending-life care if their lives became intolerable (Beuthin & Scaia, 2018). In the long period of debates concerning this issue, renegade doctors such as Jack Kevorkian was recorded to have assisted approximately 130 people to medically end their life. Although he was found guilty and charged with murder, his radical methods solidified the belief, freedom of choice (Ross, 2015). An interview conducted by CTV News Atlantic online revealed 195 medically assisted deaths since January 1- October 31 2018. (CTV News Atlantic, 2019). Currently, the procedure can be done by a Doctor or Nurse Practitioner by administering a medication to cause death, or prescribing patients with substance to self-administer, to cause death (Pesut, Thorne & Roussel, 2019). CTV Atlantic online further noted initial challenges in finding doctors or NPs performing MAiD, however, numbers have increased to 49 providers province wide (CTV News Atlantic, 2019). Additionally, in order to be granted MAiD, an individual must be grievously suffering, 18 years or older, requested for MAiD with informed consent and must also qualify for the procedure (Government Bill [House of Commons], 2016). Although it goes against health norms and values, most medical professionals argue it is an appropriate procedure for patients who will eventually die. It is for this reason why medically assisted deaths continue to rise and gain acceptance. MAiD relieves the severely ill patient from pain and suffering, it releases the family from the burden of having to care for their sick loved ones, and gives the dying individual autonomy to make their own decision concerning their death allowing them to die with dignity.Firstly, medical assisted dying is considered to be both a human right, as well as a health right (Cohen-Almagor, 2015). A ruling by the Supreme Court of Canada declared banning physician-assisted death, as a violation of a person’s human rights (CTV News Online, 2015). Death is generally considered an inevitable outcome for every individual. Furthermore, there is no ethical principle in letting a patient grieve in pain and suffering, when the patient, doctors and nurses are sure about the persons medical prognosis and outcome. Additionally, the passing of Bill C-14 allows NPs to oversee the procedure that can end an individuals’ life to relive them from intractable suffering (Pesut et al., 2019). Similarly, the process involves the patients voluntarily choosing to end life through self-administration of a lethal prescription for life-termination purposes. Interestingly, decriminalizing the procedure of assisted death does not find its jurisdiction in the value of freedom (Freeman & Liebman, 2019). However, the issue is deeply rooted and based on the fact that every individual wants to protect their loved ones from undergoing suffering. Likewise, the restrictive guidelines ensure only those identified with the most severe conditions that cannot be restored, will qualify for MAiD. Secondly, being a burden to loved one is a substantial reason why many Canadian may seek out MAiD. Although rarely mentioned, medical guidelines normally speculate that an individual’s life should be protected no matter the cost incurred (Schiller, 2017). Cohen-Almagor (2015), noted that more than 50% of patient sufferings from terminal diseases, revealed feeling as though they are a burden to their families and caregivers. Also, recent reports concerning dying with dignity, showed 49.1% of victims depicted being a burden to others as their principal concern (Cohen-Almagor, 2015). If the health practitioners have identified death as the outcome, undertaking medically assisted death becomes a selfless act to reduce the burden placed upon the persons caring for the sick individual. Similarly, individuals deciding to undergo medically assisted death will reduce the cost burden in the long-run (Trachtenberg, & Manns, 2017). According to the National Post online, adopting MAiD will save Canadian tax payers 139 million dollars annually (National Post, 2019). While human life cannot be compared to cost, there are various scenarios where the patient and the medical practitioners need to use logic and reasoning. Thirdly, different ethical arguments have been established to support MAiD with respect to the patients choice for autonomy. These ethical perspectives also overlook the duty of physicians to reduce the patient’s suffering (Fontalis & Kulkarni, 2018). Supporters of this issue consider the dying procedure as an act of compassion that upholds respect for patients’ choice of fulfilling a non-abandonment obligation. Therefore, balancing the respect for patient autonomy with other related medical principles can be used to reflect the nature of the physician-patient relationship. Society should consider death as less medical because it is neither a solution nor a therapy. However, evaluating the essence of MAiD will help the patient make an unbiased and informed decision when deciding to end their life.ConclusionTo conclude, since the establishment of Bill C14, medically-assisted dying has gained momentum and has supported many people in relieving pain and suffering for those in terminally ill states. The Supreme Court established legislation that allows patients under severe suffering, a choice and a voice in how and when their life should end. Although many consider this procedure unethical based on medical norms and values, various professionals support the move for many different reasons. Moreover, there is no need to subject patients to unending pain when death is imminent. Likewise, being a burden to one’s family is regarded as a considerable reason why most patients choose physician-assisted death. Lastly, many ethical arguments have evolved in favor of supporting respect for human autonomy. It is important to add further knowledge to nursing practice that will ensure high-quality support in the context of assisted death. Doctors, nurses, the people and the government should focus on establishing a thorough overview of legal and ethical concerns associated with medical assisted deaths.

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