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Ethical Theories Of Euthanasia Essay

Critically evaluate medical ethics and legal issues

Medical ethics are ‘the values and guidelines governing decisions in medical practise’ as noted by The Free Dictionary (2012).By discussing the controversial topic of Euthanasia I will compare contrasting ethical principles and theories and the legal issues surrounding this topic. The ethical principles outlined will be; autonomy, non-maleficence, benevolence and utility. Furthermore the ethical theories supporting these principles that will also be outlined are; utilitarianism, deontology (both Ross and Kant’s version), Rawls’s theory of justice, natural law ethics, virtue ethics and care ethics (Schwartz, Preece and Hendry, 2002).
Utilitarianism
An ethical theory which falls into the bracket…

Euthanasia, which is sometimes called a mercy killing, is currently illegal in the United Kingdom due to concerns that people may take advantage of this for example; killing elderly parents to earn an inheritance, to relieve a person from the responsibility of becoming a carer for a dependant sick relative, there are also concerns that euthanasia being legalized could award doctors too much power (Schwartz, Preece and Hendry,…

Both Kantian Deontology and Rossian Deontology are against the act of Euthanasia as in Kantian Deontology there are many perfect duties which a person must follow including ‘the duty to keep promises’ (Puthota 2011) and as all doctors must take the Hippocratic Oath and promise ‘…to use treatments for the benefit of the ill in accordance with my ability and my judgment, but from what is to their harm and injustice I will keep them’ (Dr Sokol 2008) they must uphold this promise, within Rossian Deontology prima facies duty dictates that a person must perform the actions relative to the greater good therefore treating a patient in a beneficial way in order to increase their quality of life not to end their life (Puthota…

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