When we talk about the will or right of a person to die, there are a lot of criteria and opinions, it is usually a situation that leads to ethical, moral and religious problems. There are people in favor of ending life as long as physical or emotional health requires it, depending mostly on that of the affected person.
In some countries there are laws and regulations that accept the right to die with dignity , this depends on the situation in which a person finds himself, who must meet certain conditions.
This action is known by different names depending on where you are, which can be assisted suicide, dignified death, palliative sedation, limitation of therapeutic effort and euthanasia . Below are definitions of both terms in which we will know the most outstanding differences.
What is an assisted suicide?
It is when the necessary means such as medications, doses, supplies, means and information are provided so that a person can end his life, as long as it is his own decision and does not bring legal consequences to the person who assists him.
These cases are accepted when a person is diagnosed with terminal illness or excessive suffering. Normally, this action corresponds to doctors and nurses, although there are cases where it is allowed to be assisted by people with little knowledge in the health area.
It is noteworthy that assisted suicide is carried out by the person who wishes to end his life, the participation of the health professional being passive , that is, he is limited to providing the information and resources for the patient to carry it out.
What is euthanasia?
It is the procedure that provides death to a terminal patient avoiding excessive suffering. This is done in an environment in which the patient decides to end his life, since the disease has no cure and pain limits his functions.
Euthanasia can be direct or indirect , direct is when the death of the person is brought forward. It is known as indirect when a patient stops administering treatments. This can also be voluntary , which is when the patient requests the procedure, it is known as involuntary when the patient is unable to request this procedure and it is the relatives who require it.
Difference Between Assisted Suicide and Euthanasia
- Suicide is always voluntary, in euthanasia it varies according to the condition of the patient being voluntary and involuntary.
- In suicide the medical staff is passive, in euthanasia the patient is active in the procedure.
- Suicide does not lead to legal action against the people who assist, in euthanasia if it is shown that it was the doctor who made the decision, it can bring serious legal consequences.