| ORIGINAL ARTICLE
|Year : 2008 | Volume
| Issue : 2 | Page : 71--74
Attitudes towards euthanasia and physician-assisted suicide among Pakistani and Indian doctors: A survey
Syed Qamar Abbas1, Zafar Abbas2, Stanley Macaden3
1 Deputy Medical Director, St Clare Hospice, Hastingwood, Essex, United Kingdom
2 Assistant Professor in Medicine, Muhammad Medical College, Mirpurkhas, Pakistan
3 Head of Palliative Care Programme, Bangalore Baptist Hospital, Bangalore, India
Aim: This study attempts to assess the attitude of Pakistani and Indian doctors to euthanasia and physician-assisted suicide.
Methods: We used a questionnaire survey that included one case history of a patient with cancer and another of one suffering from motor neurone disease (MND).
Results: Fifty-two of 100 doctors from Pakistan returned the completed questionnaires. Eight of the 52 (15.3%) doctors agreed with the concept of euthanasia being an acceptable option for the patient with MND. Six of the 52 (11.5%) supported a similar approach for the cancer patient. From India, 60/100 doctors returned the completed questionnaires. Sixteen of the 60 (26.6%) doctors supported euthanasia as an option for the patient with MND whereas 15 (25%) supported a similar option for the cancer patient.
Conclusion: We conclude that only a minority of the doctors support euthanasia. This group belongs to a younger age group. In Pakistan, they were more likely to be males. The religion of the doctors did not appear to be a determining factor.
Syed Qamar Abbas
Deputy Medical Director, St Clare Hospice, Hastingwood, Essex CM17 9JX
Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None
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