One thought on “Life Support Systems and the Dilemmas of Modern Medicine

  1. Gail Wilhelm

    Theodore Dalrymple’s article about euthanasia was as astute as always. However, I felt he ended his essay too quickly. There is a huge ethical issue to be explored, and I believe it must be written and spoken about, as there is, at least in North America, a definite and growing interest in assisted suicide and euthanasia. The growth in the numbers of lives ended in The Netherlands seems to indicate there is indeed “mission creep”. As the baby boomer generation ages and becomes a greater burden on the medical system, there will be pressure to institute certain procedures to for instance, ease those judged (again by whom?) to have little quality of life, to an earlier “departure”. Oh, it will all be done with the greatest of sensitivity and care, but once it starts and the obvious cost benefits are demonstrated in the books of our government run medical services, perhaps the subtle pressure to cease being a burden won’t be quite so nuanced. The handicapped and the aged may find themselves on a very slippery slope indeed.

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