M. Trachsel, Switzerland

University of Zürich Institute of Biomedical Ethics and History of Medicine
Manuel Trachsel (MD, PhD) has been trained in medicine (MD), clinical psychology (PhD), and philosophy/ethics at the University of Bern, Switzerland. He is the head of the Clinical Ethics Unit at the University Hospital of Basel, the University Psychiatric Clinics Basel, and the Geriatric University Clinic FELIX PLATTER Basel, Switzerland. He is a Research Associate at the Institute of Biomedical Ethics and History of Medicine, University of Zurich, Switzerland. In 2014, Dr. Trachsel has been a visiting research fellow at the Bioethics Center of the University of Otago, New Zealand, and in 2016/2017, a research fellow at the Cedars Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles, CA. Dr. Trachsel has been awarded with the 2020 Mark S. Ehrenreich Global Prize in Healthcare Ethics Research by the Pacific Center for Health Policy and Ethics, University of Southern California. Dr. Trachsel’s research areas include the philosophy and ethics of psychiatry and psychotherapy, the intersection of psychiatry and palliative care, ethical challenges with regard to coercive measures in psychiatry, clinical ethics support services in psychiatry, medical decision-making capacity, and informed consent. He is a published author of more than 70 scientific papers, book chapters, and books.

Presenter Of 2 Presentations

Symposium: Physician Aid-in Dying and Mental Disorders (ID 108) No Topic Needed

Live Q&A

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Pre-Recorded with Live Q&A
Date
Mon, 12.04.2021
Session Time
17:30 - 19:00
Room
Channel 6
Lecture Time
18:38 - 18:58
Symposium: Physician Aid-in Dying and Mental Disorders (ID 108) No Topic Needed

S0108 - Ethics of PAD in Mental Disorders

Session Icon
Pre-Recorded with Live Q&A
Date
Mon, 12.04.2021
Session Time
17:30 - 19:00
Room
Channel 6
Lecture Time
18:21 - 18:38

ABSTRACT

Abstract Body

Involuntary psychiatric hospitalization for suicide prevention and physician assistance in dying (PAD) for patients with severe and persistent mental illness (SPMI) combine to create a moral tension. Switzerland has the longest history of non-medicalized assistance in dying, considered as a civil right even beyond pathological situations. The debate in Switzerland centers on the notion of suffering in the context of PAD. In 2018, the Swiss Academy of Medical Sciences revised their end-of-life policy stipulating intolerable suffering due to severe illness or functional limitations and acknowledged as such by the physician as a core criterion for PAD. However, we argue that suffering is a necessary but insufficient condition for PAD, the other criteria being decision-making capacity (DMC) and refractoriness of the suffering. Moreover, we hold that suffering is a subjective experience that can only be quantified by the patient and cannot be compared between two persons in an objective way. According to this concept, however, some patients with SPMI, refractory suffering, and preserved DMC will meet the criteria for PAD. Therefore, we call for palliative care approaches in psychiatry which includes relief of suffering as much as possible, but also accepting PAD after a conscientious assessment of the criteria.

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