Woud you pay to be alive?

Let’s say you were on a freak accident. A chainsaw flew out of your hands and removed your lungs. Somehow, you ended up in hospital, breathing through machines. It is all cool and dandy, until they discover that they can’t find a lung for a transplant. You will have to pay a huge sum of money every month to keep the machines working. Paying to stay alive. What would you do?

Pull the plug. Paying $1000 in rent and food seems excessive sometimes.

Mr. Happy

Absolutely. I believe in staying alive for as long as I can. It’s not like I have something better to do with my money once I’m dead.

“They” can’t do that.

It is a hypothetical question. Would you practice Euthanasia (or assisted suicide) for economical reasons, rather than physical suffering?

No, if I had the cash I’d keep paying and hoping for a medical advance.

Well I don’t HAVE large sums of money and don’t have much opportunity to make it if I’m living in the hospital hooked up to a breathing machine. Would they let me stay alive and then I’d just owe it after the transplant, or what?

If I had the money…then, yes, I’d keep paying to stay alive.

Even if I didn’t have the money (and, in point of fact, I don’t!) I’d go a good way into debt to stay alive. I’d prefer not to sponge off my relatives, but I would sponge off of a governmental welfare plan. I’d probably sponge off a church charity, but, man, would I hate myself for it!

Maybe you could sell your kidneys. :smiley:

If there was a reasonable prospect that I would be able to get new lungs in the near future and that once that was done, I’d be up and about like normal, then yes. Go into debt if need be.

If I was going to be in that bed hooked up to that machine until I died, just accruing more and more debt, then no. Pull the plug.

I’d pay to stay alive until I ran out of money. I don’t have anyone who’s dependent on me so I have no reason to worry about saving money for after my death.

If I had disposable income keep me hooked up.
If I’m a burden on my family I’d have a day for family and friends to say good bye and then have another day with my kids and a mutt. Hold them close and try to reassure them as best I could.
Say my final farewells and kick everybody out. Pump me to the gills with happy drugs and pull the plug.

If I was genuinely wealthy and had the money, then maybe. As I don’t have any money to spare, and never have really, then it wouldn’t be worth it. It’s barely worth it as it is.

I have nothing and nobody to live for, so I would choose death.

OP, please correct me if I’m wrong, but you seem to be interested in exploring the question of whether one should refuse “paying for one’s life” as a kind of blackmail, correct?

If that’s the case then my answer would be no, I don’t see it that way. The hospital employees deserve to get paid for their work, as do the employees of the firm which made the machine I’m hooked up to. It’s perfectly reasonable that they want to be compensated for their work, just as I expect my employer to compensate me.

Now, I live in a country which has a working national health insurance system, so it is highly unlikely that I would end up having to pay for life-saving medical treatment out of my own pocket. And I could envision a situation where I might decide that staying in that hospital bed was “a fate worse than death” and there was no improvement likely in the foreseeable future, so I’d rather have the plug pulled.

But if the question is just “would you pay, if necessary, for lifesaving medical treatment” then the answer is yes, I would not have a problem with that in principle.

By the way, note that all of us are paying to be alive, every day of our lives. You need, at minimum, food and water to survive, and depending on your personal situation and environment you may need other things as well. Those things don’t come for free; somebody had to produce them (or at least transport them to you) and will expect payment for them.

I don’t see how paying for the use of a breathing machine, when you are unable to breathe by yourself, is fundamentally different from that.

Of course, for low-probability, high-cost scenarios such as this one, the normal way to deal with them is via insurance. If you live in a place where it may be impossible to get insurance even though you are able and willing to pay an amount which should be enough for the insurance company to expect to make a profit on you, then that kinda sucks…

Am I immobilised or generally unable to pursue moderately active interests (hobbies, etc)? - if I’m stuck, lying on my back in a big wheezing machine, with no particular prospect that this will ever change, then find a way to off me that a)won’t hurt and b)doesn’t void my life insurance policy.

Walton, the question is more like “would you pay a montly fee to stay hooked up to an expansive machine that keeps you alive?”

Mangetout, nope, cant get out of your bed. The freak accident also amputated your limbs.

OK, well in that case,* if* we assume that the conditions are otherwise bearable and/or temporary (e.g. if we assume that sooner or later a donor lung will become available and I will be able to lead a fairly normal life again) then sure, I’ll pay up – I’d rather be poor and alive than rich and dead.

However, with the extra stipulation you just gave Mangetout (all limbs amputated, so you get to spend the remainder of your life staring at the ceiling) I might well end up begging to be euthanized even if somebody offered to *pay me * for the privilege.

This sounds a lot like the scenario that’s already covered in my living will (or whatever all that paperwork is called). If I can be returned to “normal” unassisted functioning within a month, then I should be left on life support. If it will take longer than that, or if I can’t be returned to a semblance of normal, then I’d just as soon have the plug pulled.

Money is a component of my decision-making there, but mostly it’s just that I don’t consider death to be such a bad thing. Death happens to all of us eventually. What I want is to maximize the “life = length x quality” equation; merely delaying death isn’t necessarily the answer.