Developments in the practice of physician-assisted dying: perceptions of physicians who had experience with complex cases
Journal of Medical Ethics 44 (5):292-296 (2018)
AbstractBackground Since the enactment of the euthanasia law in the Netherlands, there has been a lively public debate on assisted dying that may influence the way patients talk about euthanasia and physician-assisted suicide with their physicians and the way physicians experience the practice of EAS. Aim To show what developments physicians see in practice and how they perceive the influence of the public debate on the practice of EAS. Methods We conducted a secondary analysis of in-depth interviews with 28 Dutch physicians who had experience with a complex case of EAS. Respondents were recruited both by the network of physicians working for SCEN as well as via a national questionnaire, wherein participating physicians could indicate their willingness to be interviewed. Results Three themes came up in analysing the interviews. First, the interviewed physicians experienced a change in what patients would expect from them: from a role as an involved caregiver to being the mere performer of EAS. Second, interviewees said that requests for EAS based on non-medical reasons came up more frequently and wondered if EAS was the right solution for these requests. Last, respondents had the impression that the standards of EAS are shifting and that the boundaries of the EAS regulation were stretched. Conclusions The perceived developments could make physicians less willing to consider a request for EAS. Our results also raise questions about the role of physicians and of EAS in society.
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Citations of this work
From Reciprocity to Autonomy in Physician-Assisted Death: An Ethical Analysis of the Dutch Supreme Court Ruling in the Albert Heringa Case.Barend W. Florijn - 2022 - American Journal of Bioethics 22 (2):51-58.
Euthanasia Requests in Dementia Cases; What Are Experiences and Needs of Dutch Physicians? A Qualitative Interview Study.Jaap Schuurmans, Romy Bouwmeester, Lamar Crombach, Tessa van Rijssel, Lizzy Wingens, Kristina Georgieva, Nadine O’Shea, Stephanie Vos, Bram Tilburgs & Yvonne Engels - 2019 - BMC Medical Ethics 20 (1):1-9.
The Involvement of Family in the Dutch Practice of Euthanasia and Physician Assisted Suicide: A Systematic Mixed Studies Review.Bernadette Roest, Margo Trappenburg & Carlo Leget - 2019 - BMC Medical Ethics 20 (1):23.
Relational Influences on Experiences with Assisted Dying: A Scoping Review.Caroline Variath, Elizabeth Peter, Lisa Cranley, Dianne Godkin & Danielle Just - 2020 - Nursing Ethics 27 (7):1501-1516.
Euthanasia in Belgium: Shortcomings of the Law and Its Application and of the Monitoring of Practice.Kasper Raus, Bert Vanderhaegen & Sigrid Sterckx - 2020 - Journal of Medicine and Philosophy 46 (1):80-107.
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