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Physician-Assisted Suicide: A Perspective From Advocates For People With Disability

Disability and Health Journal:Main Category; Public Health Article: Date 26 Dec 2009


  Although public opinion in the United States on physician-assisted suicide is evenly divided, about half of states have either defeated bills to legalize assisted suicide or have passed laws explicitly banning it and only two states (Oregon and Washington) have legalized it. In this environment, A Disability Perspective on the Issue of Physician-Assisted Suicide, a special issue of Disability and Health Journal: The Official Journal of the American Association on Health and Disability, published by Elsevier, examines the issues related to assisted suicide and disability, the legal considerations and the Oregon and Washington experiences.

  医者の自殺幇助にたいする米国の世論は二分されているが、約半数の州では自殺幇助の法制化は斥けられているか、自殺を禁止する法案がとおっている。法制化されているのはオレゴンとワシントンの二州のみである。このような状況のなかで医者の自殺幇助問題にたいする障害者の視点が『障害と健康』(The Official Journal of the American Association on Health and Disability, published by Elsevier)で特集され、自殺幇助と障害の関係、法的に考慮されるべきこと、オレゴンやワシントンでの経験が吟味された。

  Journal editors Suzanne McDermott, PhD, USC School of Medicine, Columbia, SC, and Margaret A. Turk, MD, SUNY Upstate Medical University, Syracuse, NY, have assembled six articles from disability advocates and scholars who oppose assisted suicide and thereby add important insights and background information to the debate.

  編者のSuzanne McDermottとMargaret A. Turkは自殺幇助に反対する障害支援者と学者の論考を6本収録し、この議論における重要な洞察と背景的な情報を提供している。

  Investigators from the Oregon Health and Science University examine the nature, form and impact of the Oregon Death With Dignity Act (DWD) on Oregonians with disabilities as reported in the peer-reviewed literature and data obtained from the Oregon Department of Human Services, Public Health Division (OPHD). The OPHD reports that in the 11 years since the DWD statute was enacted, 401 persons have died using DWD. The article also presents focus group data from people with disabilities regarding their opinions of the Death With Dignity Act and its impact.


  Marilyn Golden and Tyler Zoanni, both disability rights advocates, present an overview of policy arguments against legalization of assisted suicide and provide the reader with a thorough coverage of the opposition view of assisted suicide. This is followed by an article by Carol Gill, PhD that provides an analysis of the media portrayal of the disability rights activists and their position on assisted suicide.

  障害者の権利の擁護者であるMarilyn GoldenとTyler Zoanniは、自殺幇助の法制化に反対する政策論議を概観するとともに自殺幇助への反対意見の詳細を読者に提供している。この点はCarol Gillの論文でもフォローされており、障害者の権利運動の活動家の公にされた見解の分析をつうじて自殺幇助にたいするかれらの立ち位置を知ることができる。

  Diane Coleman, JD, the attorney representing Not Dead Yet, one of the oldest and most constant opponents of assisted suicide, provides an overview of the fight against legalization of assisted suicide at the Supreme Court and the arguments and information used to oppose passage of laws legalizing assisted suicide.

  Not Dead Yetを代表する弁護人であり自殺幇助にたいするもっとも古参で堅牢な批判者であるDiane Colemanは、最高裁での自殺幇助法制化をめぐる争いの概観と自殺幇助法可決反対に用いられた論証と情報を提供している。

  Gloria Krahn, PhD, the Director of the Disability and Health Team at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, provides a chronicle of the Disability Section of the American Public Health Association's debate on the issue of physician-assisted dying and her personal reflections on lessons learned.

  Gloria Krahn(the Director of the Disability and Health Team at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)は、アメリカ公衆衛生協会の障害部門でおこなわれた医師の自殺幇助問題をめぐる議論の編年史を寄せ、そこから学ばれる教訓を検討している。

  The issue concludes with an article by Kirk Allison, PhD, MS, from the University of Minnesota. Dr. Allison considers the implications of assisted suicide from a population perspective, a concept central to the public health debate. He also raises some semantic issues that have presented themselves during this debate.

  Kirk Allison(ミネソタ大学)は、人口の観点から公衆衛生をめぐる議論を中軸に自殺幇助のインプリケーションを考察している。またそれらの議論においてはからずも提起されている意味論上の問題を提起している。

  Writing in the Editorial, Professor Suzanne McDermott states, "Almost all people at the end of life can be included in the definition of 'disability.' Thus, the practice of assisted suicide results in death for people with disabilities. People with disabilities have been recognized as a health disparity group (included in Healthy People 2010); they experience substantial discrimination in society, and yet they can live extremely high-quality lives."

  Suzanne McDermottは論説のなかでこう述べている。「終末期にあるほとんどの人々が「障害者」の定義には含まれうる。こうして自殺幇助実践は障害者の死を帰結している。障害ある人々は健康から見放された人々と認識されている(Healthy People 2010所収)。つまりかれらはきわめて高いクオリティの生をいきることができるにもかかわらず、社会から深刻な差別を経験しているのである。」

  "I encourage you to read this important issue of Disability and Health Journal with an open mind…" continues Professor McDermott, "There will be many states in the next decade that introduce or consider the introduction of laws to legalize assisted suicide. The issues are complex and the evidence is not robust…We know there is another side to the debate, and this volume does not present the proponents' arguments, which have been presented in other journals. We thought it necessary to focus on the unique perspective to the disability community."


  The articles in this special edition appear in Disability and Health Journal, The Official Journal of the American Association on Health and Disability, Volume 3, Issue 1 (January 2010) entitled A Disability Perspective on the Issue of Physician-Assisted Suicide, published by Elsevier. The entire issue is publicly available online via open access at www.disabilityandhealthjnl.com.

  以上を含む同雑誌の刊行物はwww.disabilityandhealthjnl.com. にて入手することができる。

Disability and Health Journal

安楽死・尊厳死:アメリカ合衆国   ◇安楽死・尊厳死 2009  ◇安楽死・尊厳死
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