Herbert Hendin, MD




Commentary: The Case Against Physician-Assisted Suicide: For the Right to End-of-Life Care

February 01, 2004

Euthanasia is a word coined from Greek in the 17th century to refer to an easy, painless, happy death. In modern times, however, it has come to mean a physician's causing a patient's death by injection of a lethal dose of medication. In physician-assisted suicide, the physician prescribes the lethal dose, knowing the patient intends to end their life.

Commentary: Kevorkian on Trial

February 01, 1999

Putting Kevorkian on trial is not the same as developing a rational health care policy for those who are terminally ill. Kevorkian needs to be checked, but too much significance should not be given to his case. Our concern with the care for those who are seriously or terminally ill is too important to relegate to the trial of someone who is so narrowly fixed on being the instrument of his own death or that of others.

Commentary: A Victory for Patients

November 01, 1997

In the spring of 1997, legalization of physician-assisted suicide seemed inevitable. In the space of a month, two appellate courts had declared a constitutional right to physician-assisted suicide, overturning long-standing state laws in New York and Washington that prohibited the practice. Many observers expected the U.S. Supreme Court to follow suit. Earlier, Oregon had become the first state to legalize physician-assisted suicide. Although that decision was still being contested in the courts, had the Supreme Court recognized and accepted a constitutional right to physician-assisted suicide, Oregon was ready to become the first state in which it was practiced.

Assisted Suicide and Euthanasia: Oregon Tries the Dutch Way

April 01, 1995

Late last year, Oregon voters approved a law that would permit doctors to prescribe lethal drugs to patients judged to be in the last six months of life. Oregonians are setting out on a path that the Dutch have traveled for the past 20 years.