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Doctor: 'Right to Die' Ends Medicine as We Know It

10-07-2015
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California Gov. Jerry Brown, who recently signed a "right to die" measure, is receiving backlash from some leaders in the medical and religious communities.

"In the end, I was left to reflect on what I would want in the face of my own death," Brown said during the bill's signing.

Brown is a professing Catholic and has been treated for prostate cancer and melanoma.

"I do not know what I would do if I were dying in prolonged and excruciating pain. I am certain, however, that it would be a comfort to be able to consider the options afforded by this bill," he said.

However, the Catholic Church has taken a stance against the measure. They and other opponents  say it legalizes premature suicide and puts terminally ill patients at risk for coerced death.

Others say it also goes against the very purpose of medicine and could jeopardize the lives of the disabled and elderly.

"To make death by poison one of the arrows in the doctor's quiver is to change the entire profession," Dr. Grazie Christie wrote on TheFederalist.com. "How can a patient trust in his physician if death by prescription is just one of many routine management options, and perhaps the easiest and most cost-effective?"

How are doctors responding to this measure and how will it affect medicine practice in the future? Christie answered this question and others, click play to watch.

California is the fifth state to make provisions for legal medically assisted suicide.

The law requires two physicians to confirm the patient's mental competence and prognosis, and the "medication" has to be self-administered.

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