Ethical issues arising from the assisted dying debate
Intended for healthcare professionals
CPD    

Ethical issues arising from the assisted dying debate

Janet Holt Associate professor in healthcare ethics, School of Healthcare, University of Leeds, Leeds, England

Why you should read this article:
  • To enhance your understanding of the concept of a ‘good death’

  • To familiarise yourself with the nurse’s role in caring for patients requesting assisted dying

  • To contribute towards revalidation as part of your 35 hours of CPD (UK readers)

  • To contribute towards your professional development and local registration renewal requirements (non-UK readers)

The assisted dying debate is complex, with confusion over definitions and the stance taken by professional bodies. It can also be challenging to make sense of the claims made by those who support changes in the law regarding assisted dying. End of life care is an important aspect of a nurse’s role and therefore understanding the ethical issues arising from the debate is useful for nurses in clinical practice. This article outlines the legal position in the UK and the bills currently before the Westminster and Scottish parliaments proposing changes in the law. It also considers major ethical issues arising from the debate, along with the nurse’s role in caring for patients requesting assisted dying.

Nursing Standard. doi: 10.7748/ns.2022.e11879

Peer review

This article has been subject to external double-blind peer review and checked for plagiarism using automated software

@JanetHolt16

Correspondence

hcsjh@leeds.ac.uk

Conflict of interest

None declared

Holt J (2022) Ethical issues arising from the assisted dying debate. Nursing Standard. doi: 10.7748/ns.2022.e11879

Published online: 13 June 2022

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