July 26, 2016 – Euthanasia


Anchor lead: How much euthanasia and physician assisted suicide takes place around the world? Elizabeth Tracey reports

How often do people choose euthanasia and physician assisted suicide in places where it is legal?  That was the subject of a recent worldwide study, with results indicating that it isn’t elected very often, but when it is, it’s most often white, educated males who do so.  Rab Razzak, a palliative care expert at Johns Hopkins, says the finding on why people made such a choice surprised him.

Razzak:  It wasn’t pain that was the main concern. It was actually their dignity.  It brings out many ethical questions both for our country and the world.  What’s our role as health care providers? As doctors to care for our patients? I think of the impact palliative care can be is quite profound. And making sure people have high quality palliative care provided for these patients first, so we can address things like their dignity, so we can address things like pain and suffering, so that they may not need this option.  :31

At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.