Farr Curlin on The Role of the Physician and Physician-Assisted Death

Farr Curlin discusses the history and current debate around the topic of Physician-Assisted suicide on “Your Health,” a weekly radio show produced by UNC Family Medicine.

In this interview, Dr Curlin asserts that the role of physicians is to attend to those who are sick, to preserve and restore health as much as is possible, and to help them bear the pain and loss of autonomy that illness so often brings.

“Medicine has come to be practiced, unfortunately, as if it is just a powerful set of technological means to be used to pursue the goals of whoever has the power to direct those means… But for centuries, physicians have maintained, central to our profession, that we are to act for the good of those who are sick. That is to say, act so as to preserve and restore the health of our patients and never to act in a way that undermines or contradicts that commitment. Killing a patient or helping a patient to kill themselves clearly undermines that commitment.“

Click here to hear the entire interview.