Health versus harm: Euthanasia and physicians' duties

Journal of Medicine and Philosophy 32 (1):7 – 24 (2007)
Abstract
This essay rebuts Gary Seay's efforts to show that committing euthanasia need not conflict with a physician's professional duties. First, I try to show how his misunderstanding of the correlativity of rights and duties and his discussion of the foundation of moral rights undermine his case. Second, I show aspects of physicians' professional duties that clash with euthanasia, and that attempts to avoid this clash lead to absurdities. For professional duties are best understood as deriving from professional virtues and the commitments and purposes with which the professional as such ought to act, and there is no plausible way in which her death can be seen as advancing the patient's medical welfare. Third, I argue against Prof. Seay's assumption that apparent conflicts among professional duties must be resolved through "balancing" and argue that, while the physician's duty to extend life is continuous with her duty to protect health, any duty to relieve pain is subordinate to these. Finally, I show that what is morally determinative here, as throughout the moral life, is the agent's intention and that Prof. Seay's implicitly preferred consequentialism threatens not only to distort moral thinking but would altogether undermine the medical (and any other) profession and its internal ethics.
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1080/03605310601152966
Options
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Revision history
Request removal from index
Download options
Our Archive


Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 26,702
Through your library
References found in this work BETA

No references found.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA
Euthanasia and Common Sense: A Reply to Garcia.G. Seay - 2011 - Journal of Medicine and Philosophy 36 (3):321-327.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles
Euthanasia and Common Sense: A Reply to Garcia.G. Seay - 2011 - Journal of Medicine and Philosophy 36 (3):321-327.
Do Physicians Have an Inviolable Duty Not to Kill?Gary Seay - 2001 - Journal of Medicine and Philosophy 26 (1):75 – 91.
Patients' Duties.Michael J. Meyer - 1992 - Journal of Medicine and Philosophy 17 (5):541-555.
Professional Autonomy in Belgium.Herman Nys & Paul Schotsmans - 2000 - Theoretical Medicine and Bioethics 21 (5):425-439.
Lay Obligations in Professional Relations.Martin Benjamin - 1985 - Journal of Medicine and Philosophy 10 (1):85-103.
Euthanasia and Physicians' Moral Duties.Gary Seay - 2005 - Journal of Medicine and Philosophy 30 (5):517 – 533.

Monthly downloads

Added to index

2009-01-28

Total downloads

63 ( #82,158 of 2,158,464 )

Recent downloads (6 months)

3 ( #132,912 of 2,158,464 )

How can I increase my downloads?

My notes
Sign in to use this feature


Discussion
Order:
There  are no threads in this forum
Nothing in this forum yet.

Other forums