“Who Lives, Who Dies, Who Decides” by Evelyn Smatts

“Who Lives, Who Dies, Who Decides” by Evelyn Smatts


Assisted suicide has/ is one the contentious issues in the healthcare field. This article presents Evelyn Smatts views of assisted suicide. Smatts appears to be against the practice of assisted suicide. The article provides a strong argument in opposition of Physician assisted suicide. However, I believe that physician assisted suicide should be permitted not only for the purpose of relieving suffering, but also to promote the patient’s autonomy.


Proponents of physician assisted suicide argue that this practice grants terminally ill patients an opportunity to die in a humane way. It saves terminally ill help from pain and agony that is originates from their diseases. However, from Smatts experiences, all that terminally ill patients’ need is love and compassion. She states that almost all patients that demand for assisted suicide reverse their decisions after they feel that someone cares. According to Smatts, what matters to the terminally ill patients is not to reveal the pain, but to know that there are individuals who show concern and love. Thus, instead of focusing on terminating the lives of these patients, we should focus on providing love and care.

Smatts also argue that saving cost should be used to justify assisted suicide. Proponents of Assisted suicide argue that providing care to terminally ill patients cost resources despite the fact that the resources spent do not save the patients. They argue that assisted suicide would save tax payers resources. However, through her experience at the hospice, Smatts learnt that the value of being with a loved one till the last minute cannot be compared within any economic benefit. She argues that interpreting this issue from an economic perspective is not the right way to go.

I think that practitioner assisted suicide should be allowed for people who would like to push through with this practice. This will not only help to relieve suffering from terminally ill patients or save cost, but also gives the patient autonomy to decide what will happen to their lives. Autonomy is one of the elementary rights of human beings. I do not thing that someone should determine how long the other person should live. Terminally ill patient should be granted the free will to select for themselves whether they would like to continue living or die. I also think that terminally ill patients do not deserve to suffer from their illness.

Terminal illnesses cause a great deal of physical pain, as well as, psychological suffering to the patient. No one wishes to become dependent on other people. However, I believe that adequate policy regarded physician assisted suicide need to be implemented in order to prevent abuse. Legalizing physician assisted suicide create avenue where terminally ill patients would be coerced into accepting the procedure for selfish reasons. The law should address such loophole. It should ensure that people do not utilize this practice for commercial or other ill purposes.


Physician assisted suicide is the practice of deliberately assisting a terminally ill patient to end his life. Physician assisted suicide has been a contentious issue in the field of healthcare. In this article, Smatts express his views in opposition of this practice. Smatts argue that terminally ill patients need compassion rather than someone to relieve their pain by ending their lives. However, I tend to think that the decision on whether to end one’s life or to continue living should be left to the patient.


Smitts E. “Who Lives, Who Dies, Who Decides”

Is this your assignment or some part of it?

We can do it for you! Click to Order!

Order Now

Translate »

You cannot copy content of this page