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73 Notre Dame L. Rev. 1275 (1997-1998)


While advocates of physician assisted suicide consider it a core aspect of individual autonomy legalizing the practice is extremely dangerous and puts the most vulnerable members of our society at risk. Legalized physician assisted suicide takes away the autonomy of the decision to die and makes it an option in a flawed healthcare system, where patients are often denied coverage for medical expenses by employer-sponsored benefit plans and medical insurers are concerned primarily with cutting costs spent on each patient. Complexities in the way that physicians are compensated under the current system of managed care is also eroding their responsibility to act as effective counterweights to a patient’s premature desire to choose death. Let’s first ensure that the specific temptations to wrongdoing inherent in managed care are well understood and effectively counteracted before we consider extending the power of physicians so far as to encompass a license to kill their patients.


Reprinted with permission of the Notre Dame Law Review.



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