Euthanasia has been tried to belegalized but all seeming to be unsuccessful but it is still a topic that isbeing discussed in the medical environment. There have been good arguments byboth sides who agree or disagree with the procedure and are in between decidingwhether society should accept or decline ever legalizing it.
Individuals whobelieve in the process hold on to the argument that euthanasia relievespatients from their pain and also preserves the patients right to be free fromall their sufferings (Bachman et al. 304). Nurses are seen as one of the mostimportant part of healthcare process. They are usually the first group of peopleto have contact with the patient when they come in to seek care and also themost people to be seen if there is a case of extended stay or even homecare (Everhart1). They are those who entertain the patients by way of having conversationswith the patients and keeping them company.
Nurses are believed to be the heartand soul of the healthcare system. They are the most trusted by patients due totheir continuous contact with patients and hence told a lot of things thatmight be hidden from the physician (Everhart 1). Physician patient relationshipis very important but sometimes they are not formed because the physician isassigned to many patients and has to attend to all of them in a specific periodof time. Patients do not have long and detailed conversations with physiciansas they do with nurses. Physicians mostly depend on notes from the nurses inother to administer treatment to these patients. Patients depending on theillness they have cannot endure the pain they are going through hence wantingto end their lives. Sometimes their decision is not even discussed with theirfamilies but rather nurses because they feel they understand them better andknow what they are going through.
Sometimes advice is sort from the nurses asto whether they should go through with their decision or not. Aid-in-dying hasbeen something that has caught the public’s eye for some time. There have beenlaws supporting or banning it as well as physicians who have come out withstatements stating they would perform it or never perform the process on apatient. Euthanasia has to always be done for the right reasons and paid equalattention to regardless of societal class. Since nurses are known and seen tobe the closest to patients during their time of stay at a clinic or even avisit, there is a question that is being asked. There is a fight with theacceptance of euthanasia even by nurses. There has been votes where a groupopted in its favor while others declined (Asch, 1375). Through research, it hasbeen proven that some nurses have participated in this act because they wereordered to do so and others performing this procedure because a patient askedthem to.
Should nurses be allowed to play a role in aid-in-dying?Perspectiveone Utilitarianismallows individuals to perform acts as long as it leads to good consequencesespecially maximizing these consequences. With this everyone counts equally.Nurses have this at the back of their minds when attending to patients. They dowhat will make patients happy and relieve them of their pain no matter who theyare and where they come from.
Nurseshave the privilege to get close to patients and learn things about them thatdoctors or physicians would not get the opportunity to know as said earlier.They have acute knowledge of what the patient is going through, the length oftheir pain if any, whether their medication being administered is serving itspurpose or not. Even though assisting patients in dying seems like a terribleidea, unethical and a taboo by some physicians (Preston 38), it is sometimesthe best resort for a patient who has a disease or an infection with no curebut increasing pain. Leaving the patients to suffer knowing their medicationwould not be of help will lead to a disutility. Nurses are those who can reallydecide whether the plug should be pulled or AID performed on a patient becausethey have listened and know whether death will help particular patients or not.Rule will be used when nurses are allowed to play a role in AID. The rightprocedures and guidelines will be followed to maximize utility at the long run.Nurses already abide by these rules and can use it in AID where the utility inthe long run will be relieving a patient from pain through death.
Some of theserules include, the patient asking for the process twice through word of mouthand a written statement in 15 days, second physician’s opinion will be soughtin other to confirm whether the process should be performed or not, seeking avisit from a mental health professional and the patient to tell their familiesabout their decision (Lee et al. 312). Throughout the process, the nurse willbe by the side of the patient and guide them throughout the process. As part oftheir jobs, physicians have to report a request like that and theirparticipation in it to the state health division. Death is or can be a way torelieving pain that cannot be ended and patients depending on their level ofpain and whether it can be cured or not will understand that it is a part oftheir job.
Physicians will make their judgmentsbased on their findings from studies or the little they are told aboutpatients. Ending a patient’s life for the wrong reason such as influence fromfamilies or lack of resources should not be allowed because death is anirreversible process and should not be done because a person’s life seemsunworthy. The intensity of the pain has to understood, the duration and scopehas to be known as well as probability. If nurses are allowed to aid patient’sdeath due to endless pain, they will assist physicians in making the rightdecisions by enlightening them on issues some being personal which will berelevant to the final decision making process. According to the book if nurses areallowed to take part in aiding patient’s death, there will be less trust andharm will be done. I disagree with this because patients all around will knowthat nurses listen to them and pay attention to their needs hence will do whatthey can to help them in the best way they can. Death is or can be a way torelieving pain that cannot be ended and patients depending on their level ofpain and whether it can be cured or not will understand that it is a part oftheir job.
Nurses rather than not being trusted or their image being tarnishedcan be seen as the middle man between the patients and physicians to help themmake informed decisions on AID. Aside the feeling of pleasure or painbeing close to impossible to be calculated, nursing assisting in AID can leadto disutility and other negative outcomes. People believe that the greatestpain and suffering is death.
The pain is not only felt by the individualmoments before they are gone thinking about the life they are leaving behindbut also felt by families who are constantly reminded about the deathespecially it not happening from a natural cause. This maximizes disutilitybecause even though one person died in the process more will have to deal withthe end result being sorrow. Nurses assisting in AID can easily lead to abuse.Justice or human rights can be ignored.
A rich person can manipulate a nursewith money who will convince someone with a disease that cannot be cured or apoor person with no money for treatment to take part of the process in otherfor organs to be harvested for the rich. Life value of the less privilege isseen as worthless hence there will be no harm in assisting them in AID if itwill assist the rich to survive. It is stated that the undervalued that is theelderly, poor, minorities and so on find it hard to protect their interest.When this happens it means that for the good of the few that is the rich andthe higher class in the society, other’s rights and interests can be violated.
Ending a patient’s life for the wrong reason such as influence from families orlack of resources should not be allowed because death is an irreversibleprocess and should not be done because a person’s life seems unworthy.Perspectivetwo Patients wish their demands aregranted because they believe it will help their illness or situation. Nurses,because they have a duty to help patients feel good about themselves when theypay attention to their wishes and grants them. They also do so because theyfeel the pain these patients are going through. Patients assigns duties tonurses in their heads and know that they will be by their side, be able toconfide in them and expect them to grant their wishes.
It is morally right if anurse helps a patient out with the intent of saving them from their sufferingor taking them out of their misery. This is what deontology suggests. If anurse gives a patient an injection that makes them feel better in the long run,they are praised because of their actions helping. Same should be viewed ofnurses assisting in AIDs because at the long run the patient does not cry orcomplain about the feel anymore they are relieved through death. Nurses usereason which is distinctively human to make these decisions.
If a patient tella nurse how he or she feels and decides death is the only way forward for himor her, the nurse will assess the situation, look at the records and examinetheir pain before suggesting to the physician or reporting to them about theconcern of the patient. Aside this why we do something matters as much as whatwe do. The motives of these nurses are to help these patients feel better inany way they can. The nurse does not intentionally help a patient die becauseit is fun but because it is the right thing to do after constant conversationswith the patient and physicians. Also, subjectivism and autonomyshould permit a patient to end his or her life if they feel the pain they aregoing through cannot be endured. Also as humans we have rights that allows usto make our own decisions.
Refusing a treatment to someone even if it leads todeath means depriving the person of their right and self-determination. A nursehas a right to choose and should not be deprived of their right too (Cotton 363).A nurse should be allowed to participate in the process after the nurse givestheir informed consent. They should be free of any sort of controllinginfluence. It can be hard for nurses to know thedifference between morally legitimate desires and those that are not. Eventhough they are trained professionals, it may be hard for them to see throughdesires of patients that are not moral. If a patient is not in his or her rightmind and request the procedure to be performed on them, nurses should be ableto stand firm in other to refuse the request but it can be the case wherereason is out aside and based on inclination, wrong decisions will be makethinking the patient is being helped.
. Nurses sometimes base their actions ondesires, emotions, and instincts. This is a problem because, inclination shouldnot be allowed when it has to do with life and death. Reason has to be used inthis case. Sometimes nurses feel bad for people who are suffering and tend tohelp them in any way they can without thinking it through and this is where thegood name of the health system can be tarnished.
Nurses when it comes to AID,tend to skip rules and processes part of the reason they should not be allowedto participate in this act. Nurses should not have it in their heads thatwhatever a patient suggests will help with their illness is right. If subjectivismis true, it will mean that none of the patients are morally wrong. Patients canmake wrong choices because of what their body is going through. Nurses insteadof trying to be good and liked granting these wishes should be firm and educatepatients on what they ask for, if uncertain deny these patients the processes.If they cannot abide by this, they need to stay out of AID. Perspectivethree Religious or cultural nurses as well as somepatients believe that that earthly suffering is temporal and that there is apeaceful place without suffering after death (Berghs et al.
441). This iscommonly seen among Christians and will encourage nurses or even physicians toaid in their deaths. The Bible states “He will wipe away every tear from theireyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying,nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.
” And he who wasseated on the throne said, “Behold, I am making all things new” (Revelations21). After reading this, Christian patients would want their pain to end and goto a place with their maker where they can enjoy internal life without worryingabout pains. Nurses who have the same believes will do the process for thesepatients to send them to the new world and relieve them of their pain. It isalso taught in Christian homes that people who are believers spend eternal lifein paradise after death, where everyone will It is also seen in Muslims whenthey would sacrifice themselves for others or would not hesitate to die becausethey are taught there is a better world provided for humans with Allah afterdeath.
The Bible says, “For the living know that they will die; but the deadknow nothing… their love, their hatred, and their envy have now perished”(Ecclesiastes 9:5). Christians are taught since childhood that there is a placeknown as paradise that believers go after death and are prepared for it for theafterlife. If a Christian patient is in pain with none of the medicationhelping with an option of ending his or her life, he or she will opt for thatbecause of these teachings. Others do not believe in such a way ofending life.
They wish the only way of death is the one from natural causes.These people believe in moral relativism where their culture or religiondetermines what is moral or not. In such a case the individual will declinesuch a process even if it is reasonable for them to do so. They will feel it willhinder their chances of being at a better place after death. Natural deaths areviewed with dignity because in their opinion, it is a way of God saying it istime to join him. AID will mean the individual is suggesting that he or sheknows better than the Almighty who is All-Knowing.
Nurses who have this mentality will not engagein such a role because it goes against their religion and believe will leave apermanent stain on them. Justification Nurses should be permitted to play a rolein AID because they are those who constantly have interactions with patientsand know what they go through on the daily bases and are the qualified peopleto advice physicians as to which patients are well qualified for euthanasia. Alsonurses playing a role in AID will lead to maximizing utility because deathswill help relieve people of their pain and sufferings. Nurses will use reasonas part of their training to make the right decisions when it comes toeuthanasia. Right procedures will be followed because as nurses always do, theylook out for the well-being of a patient because of their kind and warm hearts.Hasty decisions concerning pulling the plug on a patient can be drastic but ifthere is a nurse to serve as a mediator, such mistakes will be avoided most ofthe time which will go a long way to preserve the good name of the healthsystem. Most patients are autonomous and can make their own decisions. Alsothey have rights and these have to be respected and listened to.
If a patientchoses to end his or her life due to an illness causing pains that cannot beendured, he or she should be granted that free of any outside forces ordistractions. It is the duty of nurses to assist patients with their illness anddo what is in their power to help them feel better. If nurses are allowed toplay a role in AID and it helps a patient feel better, it is mean their duty isbeing performed hence not doing anything to hurt these patients. Religiouspatients believe that earthly sufferings are temporary and that there is abetter place where pain and illness does not exist as a result they will askfor the process to be performed on them. Some if not most nurses are alsoreligious and have the same believes (Berghs et al. 442). If they see a fellow Christiansuffering, they will suggest such a process to them and will talk them throughit.
Nurses should be allowed to do this because there is a good reason behindit that will be helping patients.