Is It 'Assisted Suicide' or 'Aid in Dying'?

October 23, 2019

Last year, in a break from American Medical Association policy, the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP) declared that it would adopt a neutral stance on whether individual states should permit medical aid in dying, as reported by Medscape Medical News. Delegates also rejected the term "assisted suicide," and replaced it with "medical aid in dying" in all official AAFP communications and documents.

But two resolutions proposed at AAFP's 2019 Congress of Delegates ask that the decision restricting wording be reversed. "A policy that prohibits the use of a certain word by definition is not neutral," argued one physician supporter.

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