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ETHICS IN MEDICINE   University of Washington School of Medicine

Physician Aid-in-Dying:
Case 1

A recently divorced fifty-five-year-old man with severe rheumatoid arthritis comes in for a routine visit complaining of insomnia. He requests a specific barbiturate, Seconal®, as a sleep aid, asking for a month's supply. On further questioning, he states that he wakes up every morning at four, tired but unable to go back to sleep. He admits that he rarely leaves his house during the day, stating that he has no interest in the activities he used to find enjoyable.

What is an appropriate course of action?


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