Knowledge and Attitude Towards Euthanasia and Advance Directives amongst Medical Students in a Private Medical College and Hospital at a Metropolitan City of India

Authors

  • P Shruthi
  • G Sudaakar

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.37506/ijfmt.v15i2.14351

Keywords:

Euthanasia, Advance directives, Medical students, Awareness, Knowledge, Attitude.

Abstract

Background - Decision making about ‘End of life’ is value-laden with respect to the context of culture and
ethics. Advanced and improved medical technologies and well qualified health care professionals are always
trying to sustain life , sometimes even when there is no hope of recovery .This has led to a need for an end
of life decision making legislation more than ever.
Euthanasia (Painless or mercy killing) and advance directives are less popular concepts in Indian context as
against the many of the nations worldwide.
Objective- To study the knowledge and attitude of medical students toward euthanasia and advance
directives.
Methodology - 400 medical students were chosen randomly and a cross-sectional descriptive questionnaire
based study was conducted administering a pre-tested, semi structured questionnaire to assess their
knowledge and attitude regarding euthanasia and advance directives in a private medical college and hospital
at Chennai. The data collected was statistically analysed using appropriate statistical tools in SPSS software.
Results- Female preponderance, 246 (61.5%) was noted in the study with female to male ratio being 1.6:1.
76% of them had heard about Euthanasia and 29% of them were aware of the concept of advance directives.
61% of them wanted active euthanasia to be legalised. 54% of them believed that this concept may easily
be misused and that was the reason against opting for euthanasia. 34% of them were aware that the mental
health act (MHCA) , 2017 promoted advance directive in India.Although none of them had helped any
patient write an advance directive, 77% of them felt that health care providers should always anticipate
discussion about end-of-life issues with the patient.
Conclusion- This study concludes that majority of the medical students in teaching medical colleges and
hospital had moderate to high level of knowledge of euthanasia and moderate to poor level of knowledge
regarding advance directives.

Author Biographies

P Shruthi

Associate Professor

G Sudaakar

Undergraduate Student, Department of Forensic Medicine and Toxicology, Saveetha
Medical College, Thandalam, Chennai, Tamilnadu

Published

2021-03-24

How to Cite

P Shruthi, & G Sudaakar. (2021). Knowledge and Attitude Towards Euthanasia and Advance Directives amongst Medical Students in a Private Medical College and Hospital at a Metropolitan City of India. Indian Journal of Forensic Medicine & Toxicology, 15(2), 457-461. https://doi.org/10.37506/ijfmt.v15i2.14351

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