|Title||Reflections on the debate on disability and aid in dying.|
|Publication Type||Journal Article|
|Year of Publication||2010|
|Journal||Disability and health journal|
|Date Published||2010 Jan|
BACKGROUND: A policy resolution supporting physician aid in dying was proposed to the American Public Health Association (APHA) in 2007 that prompted a debate with the Disability Section on its meaning for people with disabilities. OBJECTIVE: The present paper reflects on the issues revealed and lessons learned. METHODS: The debate included subcommittee discussion; review of research, polls, administrative reports; discussion with disability rights organizations; and floor-debate and vote by the APHA Governing Council. RESULTS: Reflections on the process are summarized under the themes: we all have our own views; it's highly personal; confusion among key concepts; I might want it for myself; it's about control and not about pain; the slippery slope and other arguments; and undue burden on people with disabilities. CONCLUSIONS: The APHA resolution supporting aid in dying was passed in 2008 with some improvements in the language and a recommendation to measure pre-existing disability. Valuable lessons were learned through the debate process.