A few days ago, a TV program was on regarding the terminal care, especially, the life sustaining care in the terminal stage. This topic was a kind of off-limits for mass media. With a surprise to know such topic is coming on mass media, I watched it for a while. The tone of the arguement was generally positive for death in dignity.
Now, it is an era of advanced age in Japan. The terminal care should be a problem for many people. The expenditure for the terminal care is told to occupy the greater part of the cost for medical services. From that standpoint, this topic should have been discussed long before as well.
It has never been possible for medical staff to discuss about or propose death in dignity to their patients or their families, even though there have been many occasions necessary for that. Mercy killing has been out of question here. The medical staff are destined to go on treating his/her patient until the very last minute. Without doing that, we could be accused for "unintentional killing". Among medical staff, it has been a matter of question. But it has officially been an untouchable area in medical services. We should wait until the people themselves become aware of that and start discussing about it as an own problem.
It is a good thing that such a topic is coming up for discussion among the people, even if it is lead by mass media. Our life is not eternal. We should accept death sometime. It is questioned how to accept it now. We could not know when and how it comes on us. But we should get ready for that by ourselves.
The only worry about this problem is that it is not us but the bureaucratics and/or politicians who
have lead it behind mass media. Their concern is only about the growing expenditure for the termical care. It could distort the discussion. The discussion should be based on our own idea regarding how to live and how to die.