The Patient Right Autonomy Act is a proclamation in the form of a law to
protect the autonomy of the patient. Its aim is to retain the dignity of life and its
last value. But is this the ultimate concern of the patient at the end of his or her
life? This paper explores the meaning of the Act from the perspective of the
value of life, analyses the process of protecting patients from suffering of life,
and then examines the needs of a patient at the end of life from clinical cases.
We found that besides the avoiding of suffering, there are burdens, love and
commitments to the everlasting responsibility to those loved ones of this life.
I believe that this Patient Right Autonomy Act is well-intended, but the
advance medical decision only states the way of medical treatment and death,
and it is not enough to fulfil other values of life that appeal to the terminal
patient. First of all, the dilemma of real life is: in addition to getting rid of the
physical suffering, facing the upcoming death, we need the capability and
courage in saying goodbye to members of the family; secondly, worrying about
how relatives could live peacefully with those survived and the dead after bereavement, it seems that in the consciousness of the patient before the
heartbeat stops, guarding the love ones is the ultimate concern of his or her life.
In the end, the Act only reminds us that we must be living prepared in order to
have autonomy. It is through the preparation and practice of “living” and
“autonomy” in the training of a course of in “life and death”, that we have the
courage and ability to face the death of ourselves and loved ones. Through the
consultation of medical care and substantive care service provided by the
medical team that we find the exit of living autonomously and a good death.