Year: 1995 Source: Hastings Center Report, v.25, no.3, (May-June 1995), p.24-25 SIEC No: 19950171

This case study involves an unconscious 80-year-old in an emergency room (pill overdose & suicide note) connected to a ventilator to assist breathing. She had completed an advance directive. The person given power of attorney for health decisions said the woman made a rational decision to commit suicide & requested the ventilator be removed. The 2 commentaries on this case address the question of whether removal of the ventilator is assisted suicide or consistent with the patient’s prior wishes.