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On Euthanasia: Where Were You When I Was Hurting

Matthew Conolly

In his own words, Dr. Conolly has said, Why we suffer pain and death in a world created (as we believe) by a loving God; to explore the concept that although God refuses to undo His creation which has gone awry, He accepts responsibility for what He has made, and prefers to stand with us as we go through the pain and suffering which this world brings (to believers and non-believers alike), rather than taking us out of it. I want to consider the notion that Medicine, far from showing that God is dead, is rather mankind's feeble attempt to imitate God's involvement in human misery (from medieval monks to Mother Theresa). This would lead on to considerations of euthanasia (which I oppose, but which will soon be a ballot issue in California again), and to the need for good Pain Management, and the conflict that brings with the ethos of managed care. I will attempt to illustrate all this with a few vignettes of patients I have worked with, and experiences I have had in my time as a physician.

Matthew Conolly, M.D. is currently Professor of Anesthesiology at the UCLA Medical School. Dr. Conolly was born in England and attended medical school at Westminster Hospital, London University. He has attained numerous prizes and distinctions including the Barclay Smith Prize in practical anatomy, the Chadwick Class Prize in surgery and others. He is a fellow of both the American and Royal College of Physicians and has served as Advisor to the House of Lords Committee against euthanasia, Chairman of the UCLA Pharmacy and Therapeutics committee, Expert witness to the Committee on Science Research and Technology in the U.S. House of Representatives in hearings on the F.D.A., and as a member of the Ethics Committee at the UCLA Medical School. He has authored many academic papers for various national and international medical journals, has delivered lectures to divers audiences in America and abroad, and is currently interested in pain management and Euthanasia.

Program recording date and length: 2001 ~ 1 Hour 25 Minutes (This study was presented originally at UCLA.)

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