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January 20, 1999

Responding to Patient Requests for Physician-Assisted Suicide

Author Affiliations

Margaret A.Winker, MDIndividualAuthorPhil B.FontanarosaMD, Senior EditorsIndividualAuthor

JAMA. 1999;281(3):227-229. doi:10-1001/pubs.JAMA-ISSN-0098-7484-281-3-jbk0120

To the Editor: Dr Emanuel's1 8 progressive steps for responding to requests for PAS are a welcome set of recommendations, especially given her clear articulation of their basis in 2 allegedly uncontroversial moral principles. Although I support their use, I wonder if her second principle—"the physician's obligation to provide suffering patients effective comfort care"—will remain as uncontroversial as she claims it is when the length to which she carries it is fully grasped.