Czy decydujemy o swojej śmierci?
DO WE DECIDE ABOUT OUR DEATH?
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Along with intensively developing, life-prolonging medical technology, various issues arise related to the procedure of dying. May one give up life-sustaining therapy that is medically recommended but undesired by the patient? May one resign from making use of medical procedures (through something known as a living will or advance directive)? People do want to decide about the manner and the time of their own death but they are deprived of this right. Is a suicide committed with the help of a doctor morally justified? Should a medically supported suicide should be pennitted by law? The idea of a living will first appeared in Poland in public debate in 2008. In Polish law there is no prohibition against expressing consent for the future and it is treated as a classical declaration of the patient’s will. According to Article 9 of the European Convention on Bioethics, the physician is obliged to take into consideration the patient’s will expressed in advance. At present, the Polish health system is not capable of ensuring the implementation of a living will signed abroad. The Bill on the Amendment to the Act on Patient Rights and the Patient Rights Spokesman assume the possibility of implementing a living will created in another country. If a patient in New York has a bracelet with the inscription DNR (Do Not Resuscitate), doctors will not attempt to save his life at any cost. Shall the Polish Parliament introduce a similar form of deciding about one’s own life, namely so-called a living will?
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