The Hippocratic Oath

For those of you writing any essay about the rights and wrongs of health, medicine or doctoring, you may need to make consideration of the Hippocratic Oath.

This document, as so many marvellous things are, is from the Greek civilisation of the 9th to 2nd centuries BC, and is an agreement taken by all doctors.

The gist of the oath is that doctors (or “physicians”) would always try to heal or reduce the suffering of their patients, and would never tell anyone about the treatment of their patients.

Of particular interest is this section:

“I will prescribe regimens for the good of my patients according to my ability and my judgment and never do harm to anyone.
I will not give a lethal drug to anyone if I am asked, nor will I advise such a plan…”

Is there a disagreement between “the good of my patients” and “not give a lethal drug” when considering the issue of euthanasia?

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