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Attitudes of Belgian Students of Medicine, Philosophy, and Law Toward Euthanasia and the Conditions for Its Acceptance

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Euthanasia is legal in Belgium if due care criteria are met, which is judged by committees including physicians, ethicists, and jurists. We examined whether students in these disciplines differ in how they judge euthanasia as an acceptable act. A cross-sectional, anonymous e-mail survey revealed that they have similar attitudes and accept its legalization. Therefore, joint decision-making of physicians, ethicists, and lawyers regarding euthanasia seems to have a common attitudinal base in Belgium. However, they differ to some extent regarding the conditions they put forward for euthanasia being acceptable. Philosophy of life (religion) was an independent predictor of these attitudes.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: End-of-Life Care Research Group, Vrije Universiteit Brussel and Ghent University, Brussels, Belgium 2: Department of General Practice and End-of-Life Care, Vrije Universiteit Brussel, Brussels, Belgium

Publication date: March 16, 2015

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