The importance of AMA's posture on assisted suicide
would be difficult to exaggerate.
Health authorities have refused to pay for his social and home care, offering assisted suicide
Although assisted suicide
is legal in some countries, Switzerland is the only place which accepts foreign nationals for the life-ending process.
In its latest Code of Ethics, the AMA reaffirmed its long-held position that "allowing physicians to engage in assisted suicide
would cause more harm than good.
It requires all parties to treat the assisted suicide
of such a patient no differently than natural death.
The most effective political opponents of assisted suicide
these days are organizations like the aptly named Not Dead Yet, a tough-minded defender of the rights of handicapped persons.
More recently, the assisted suicide
in Oregon of 29-year-old Brittany Maynard, who suffered from terminal brain cancer, received considerable national attention.
Patients with low health insurance were denied cancer treatment and instead offered assisted suicide
It has been more than 20 years since the case of another patient with Lou Gehrig's disease, Sue Rodriguez, gripped Canada as she fought for the right to assisted suicide
. She lost her appeal but took her own life with the help of an anonymous doctor in 1994, at the age of 44.
This ruling upheld the Criminal Code's ban on assisted suicide
Forms of assisted suicide
are also available in the American states of Oregon, Montana, Vermont, and Washington, as well as Belgium and Holland.