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University of Louisiana at Monroe Health Care Ethics Discussion

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Dr. Jack Kevorkian (who died of natural causes on June 3, 2011 at the age of 83) is probably the most well-known champion of physician-assisted suicide. He purports to have personally helped a minimum of 130 patients die. Watch the video clips in Moodle of interviews with Dr. Kevorkian before completing this assignment.

Be sure to read the specific requirements for the paper at the bottom of this page. Many of the points students lose on these papers are due to APA formatting issues (see below) and grammar! If you have questions, ask.

In the U.S. only Oregon, Washington and Montana have legalized physician-assisted suicide. Oregon has the Death with Dignity Act, Washington approved physician-assisted suicide in the 2008 election, and the Montana Supreme Court recently allowed the procedure. California and Vermont are currently considering measures to allow physician-assisted suicide. Thirty-five states prohibit physician-assisted suicide by statute, 9 states prohibit it by case law, and 5 states have no language identifying physician-assisted suicide as a crime.

The American Medical Association has issued a policy statement against physician-assisted suicide. The complete policy statement can be found at:

Discuss the medical ethics of physician-assisted suicide.

· What are the arguments for and against physician-assisted suicide? Discuss at least 2 reasons on either side of the argument.

· Do you believe physician-assisted suicide is a right, or is it wrong? Explain/support your belief.

o If you believe it is a right, is physician-assisted suicide ethical in all cases?

o If you believe it is wrong, do you believe there should be specific exceptions or is this just a “slippery slope”?

· How did the video clips of Dr. Kevorkian influence your decision? Explain.

· Should Dr. Kevorkian have been convicted of murder for his role in physician-assisted suicide? Why or why not?

Students are to write a 2-3 page research paper on the topic by answering all the questions stated above. Students are to cite research in answering the above questions for the paper.

The paper should be submitted via Moodle in MS Word. You are expected to cite 2-3 references for this paper utilizing APA. No title page, table of contents or abstract is needed for this assignment. Simply put your identifying information in the upper right hand corner of the first page. Remember this is a 2-3 page assignment(including references)!

· Standard paper size (8 ½ x 11 paper)

· 12-pt. Times New Roman font

· Double spaced

· 1 inch margins on top, bottom, right, and left

· Indent all paragraphs 5-7 spaces or ½ inch

· Page numbers in upper right hand corner of page, use Arabic numerals

· Reference in text using appropriate APA style and include reference page at the end of the paper. When citing internet resources, only web sites that end in “.edu”, “.org”, or “.gov” will be accepted as references. Also, Wikipedia in any form will NOT be accepted as a reference.


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