Dr. Daniel Sulmasy is the Kilbride-Clinton Professor of Medicine and Ethics in the Department of Medicine and Divinity School at the University of Chicago, where he serves as Associate Director of the MacLean Center for Clinical Medical Ethics and as Director of the Program on Medicine and Religion. He received his AB and MD degrees from Cornell University and holds a PhD in philosophy from Georgetown University. Sulmasy was appointed to the Presidential Commission for the Study of Bioethical Issues by President Obama in 2010. His research interests encompass both theoretical and empirical investigations of the ethics of end-of-life decision-making, ethics education, and spirituality in medicine. He is the author or editor of six books, including Safe Passage: A Global Spiritual Sourcebook for Care at the End of Life (2014). He also serves as editor-in-chief of the journal, Theoretical Medicine and Bioethics.
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Legalization would undermine the patientphysician relationship and the trust necessary to sustain it; alter the medical professions role in society; and endanger the value our society places on life, especially on the lives of disabled, incompetent, and vulnerable individuals.
The debate about death with dignity needs the wisdom of the Catholic spiritual tradition, says physician and bioethicist Dr. Daniel Sulmasy.
Some physicians' sense of helplessness when they cannot cure, when the disease is beyond their control, can be coupled with the belief that control gives life its meaning. Sharing these beliefs with their patients, they offer them euthanasia and assisted suicide.