death with dignity

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Related to death with dignity: euthanasia, Dying With Dignity, Death with Dignity Act

"death with dignity"

Etymology: AS, death + L, dignus, worthy
the philosophical concept that a terminally ill client should be allowed to die naturally and comfortably, rather than experience a comatose, vegetative life prolonged by mechanical support systems.

death with dig·ni·ty

(deth dig'ni-tē)
An option chosen by a competent individual, or one having power of attorney when he/she is incompetent to make an informed choice, about actions to be taken when that individual is dying. Death with dignity often includes the implementation or withholding of various treatments as defined by the competent person and/or person with power of attorney. These treatments may range from the implementation of comfort measures, including pain control, antibiotic therapy, blood administration, cardiovascular medications, and palliative measures to life-sustaining devices. Other treatments may include the withdrawal of life-sustaining measures such as enteral feedings and resuscitative interventions, including cardiopulmonary resuscitation and medications.

death with dignity

Death that is allowed to occur in accordance with the wishes of a patient. An individual may choose to withdraw from chronic medical therapies, as when there is little expectation of cure. Patients who choose death rather than active treatment often have advanced malignancies, poor performance status, major depression, poor social support, or a desire for a palliative approach to end-of-life care.
See also: death
References in periodicals archive ?
State legislation is often modeled on the Death with Dignity Act that legalized aid in dying in Oregon in 1997.
Death with dignity proposals have more people thinking about their own mortality, she said.
said Margaret Dore, a Washington-based attorney and president of Choice is an Illusion, an advocacy group that opposes Death with Dignity laws.
Following the failure to repeal the Death with Dignity Act, the OMA has in essence changed its stance for a third time, offering what some might say is the only reasonable response: compliance under the law.
We need a mind shift in South Africa about death with dignity," he told the audience.
In concrete terms, we are talking about the potential for a Vermont Death with Dignity law in 2011
Another concern was that the Death with Dignity Act might undermine efforts to improve hospice or palliative care.
People who talk about death with dignity are often not thinking of death, but of the state that precedes it.
A Gift of Peace (Loyola, 1997), by the late Cardinal Joseph Bernardin, has "brought a profound message of death with dignity," says Neil Heskin, manager of Earthen Vessel bookstore in Arlington Heights, Illinois.
Bertrand is not talking about utilizing Oregon's groundbreaking Death With Dignity law.
Oregon was the first state to implement its Death with Dignity Act in 1997 after voters approved the law in 1994, and four other states--Montana, New Mexico, Vermont and Washington --now allow for medically assisted death.