Healthcare professionals work in highly complex and stressful environment where they are required to meet the legal standards as well as expectations of patients. While working in such an environment they face multiple ethical dilemmas, one such dilemma is Assisted Euthanasia. Assisted euthanasia refers to the situation wherein the healthcare professional help a terminally ill patient to die either by giving lethal drugs or by not providing the treatment required to prevent death. Assisted euthanasia has been a controversial issue around the world and is illegal in most countries. In United States euthanasia is illegal in most of the states except - Oregon, Washington, California, Vermont and Montana (Harris, 2011). Oregan had legalized assisted suicide in 1994 and it was the first state to do so. However in other stated depending upon the circumstances euthanasia had been termed as murder or manslaughter and is punishable by law. Even the medical ethics require that all efforts should be done to keep a patient alive. At times terminally ill patients and their relatives prefer euthanasia so as to relieve the patient from pain and sufferings. Thus on humanitarian grounds, the healthcare professional might feel the pressure of euthanasia.
This paper provides a review of interview of a hospital administrator, a spiritual leader and a healthcare colleague. This paper presents the summary of the responses given by these individuals regarding their individual philosophy and worldview. As per their responses given, apart from spiritual leader, everybody is in favor of assisted euthanasia for terminally ill patients subject to certain conditions. Nurses receive intense pressure from the patients for voluntary euthanasia. The nurse and the healthcare administrator believe that to end one's life is a right of a patient. They favor assisted euthanasia whether it is legal or not. Furthermore, patients trust healthcare professionals and thus they should respect their decisions. However, the patient and his loved ones should agree for assisted euthanasia. On the contrary, spiritual leader believes that the God has given us life and only he should end the same.
Healthcare professional strongly support physician-assisted suicide and it should be accepted socially and legally.