By Peter J. Whitehouse, Jesse Ballenger, Sid Katz (auth.), David N. Weisstub, David C. Thomasma, Serge Gauthier, George F. Tomossy (eds.)
Decisions on the finish of Life is the final quantity in a trilogy on Aging conceived for the International Library of Ethics, legislation, and the NewMedicine. major students from quite a number disciplines research the most emotive issues within the research of getting older: assessing caliber of existence, bettering end-of-life care, palliative care, euthanasia, and consent to research.
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Extra resources for Aging: Decisions at the End of Life
As so often, one source of this disorientation in medicine has been the success it has enjoyed. The twentieth century scientific era has seen the medical profession reach a zenith of social respect and power. With the biomedical sciences, medicine was able for the first time to deliver results and command authoritative explanations. The goals of medicine were to save lives and eradicate disease. As laudable as these goals were and are, the price was a relative diminishment of the values of care in a broader sense of the term.
This message should reach people in all walks of life and stimulate self-gerogogy, self-help, and respectful dialogue. As Callahan (1994, 41) puts it, medicine should resist that "most powerful of all medical temptations, the vision of a direct and invariable correlation between medical progress and human happiness, that conflates the quest for meaning and the quest for health. " Development and maintenance of a sense of moral solidarity between the generations depends upon a public dialogue on the significance of old age in the common life of society and on a firm understanding that values are shared meanings at the individual and at the societal level.
Is this question answerable? Is it wise to pose such a question? One focus for integration is the very conceptions of life and death. Part of an assessment of quality of life in an older individual is how death fits into the picture. An ideal situation would be that quality of life would be maintained until the point that biological life ends. One can also ask what a wise individual might say about his or her own death, and about the end of life in general. Clearly, Socrates viewed his death in relationship to his society, as well as in the context of his own individual life.
Aging: Decisions at the End of Life by Peter J. Whitehouse, Jesse Ballenger, Sid Katz (auth.), David N. Weisstub, David C. Thomasma, Serge Gauthier, George F. Tomossy (eds.)