Should Euthanasia become legalized in the UK? NHS perspective

The debate regarding Euthanasia is one that remains ongoing and is one that holds a crucial significant role in the minds of many. The subject of this topic is one that is highly controversial and is a divisive topic that opens and raises array of concerns from moral, ethical, and religious. Euthanasia is founded by a Greek word meaning good death, and from a medical perspective what is being considered is voluntary active euthanasia. The debate concerning this issue was currently re sparked when recently on May 10th 2018, a British-born Australian botanist and ecologist at 104 years old went to Liestal, Switzerland to become euthanized. Due to Euthanasia not being legal in the UK many considering this possibility spend thousands to go to places like Dignitas Switzerland, or Liestal Switzerland, this creates logistical challenges as it means only some are able to do it. It is a possibility that is held in high regards and is constantly being argued, in 2006 there was a 7 hour debate in the UK parliament to pass a bill in regards to Euthanasia however the bill was declined with a 148 to a 100 vote.

Looking at this issue from a religious perspective it is evident that many religions would be against this matter as it degrades the value of God’s creation and reduces the sanctity of life. These are the thoughts of many religious leaders that came together in 2005 and agreed that they were against euthanasia. In contrast to this perspective, many individuals who perceive euthanasia from a moral perspective are often in favor of it as they believe everyone has the right to die especially die with dignity. They may also believe that Euthanasia is vital in relieving the suffering that many go through especially those who have terminal illnesses like locked in syndrome where there is no longer a possibility of them getting better.

Although both of the perspectives considered so far are valid, once looking at this issue through the statistics and facts regarding the NHS, and individuals stance on this matter may become differd. The British Medical Association is considering the possibility of allowing euthanasia but many believe this is hypocritical as it goes against the prime desire of a doctor and the oath doctors swear by which is to save lives. The NHS currently spends around 32.2 billion pounds on palliative care. With the increasing world population, and the advancements of the healthcare system, individuals are living longer. This results in an increase of individuals demanding and needing services like palliative care however many including the NHS in the future may believe that too much money is being provided to these matters when instead it can be used to fund the lives of people who are just starting to achieve their potential.

Six states in the US and four countries in Europe have legalized some form of assisted dying. More than 244 terminally ill people have had to travel abroad from Britain to end their life legally however this may change as in the future it is a likely possibility that euthanasia will become legalized in the UK. The choice of permitting or declining euthanasia should be considered thoroughly, and a decision that satisfies all religious moral ethical and practical perspectives should and surely will be made by the NHS.

References:

https://www.independent.co.uk/news/health/assisted-dying-laws-are-progressing-in-some-places-the-uk-isn-t-one-of-them-a7679846.html4

http://www.bbc.co.uk/ethics/euthanasia/overview/problems.shtml

https://www.hospiceuk.org/media-centre/facts-and-figures

 

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