Author(s): Elçin BALCI

This investigation was performed in order to reveal the knowledge and attitudes of the Turkish nurses regarding euthanasia and suicide. This cross-sectional study was performed in the provincial center of Sivas, Turkey, in 2010. A total of 641 nurses who are working in University Hospital, two public an d one private hospitals, dialysis centers, family health centers and public health centers were included in the study. A questionnaire prepared by the investigators and including 25 questions was administered. Of the nurses 96.1% stated that they knew what euthanasia was and 29.3% stated that euthanasia should be a human right, 83.2% that it was illegal in Turkey. While 17.3% of the participants accepted euthanasia as a suicide, 36.3% have separated sucide from euthanasia. The rate of those that stated they might want eutahanasia for themselves was 26.7%, and those that stated that the patients had a right to ask for euthanasia was 58.2%. Of the nurses 85.6% have stated that if a patient demand help for euthanasia, they certainly would not help, and 35.1% stated that if necessary, the physician should be the one to assist. Nurses have different opinions regarding euthanasia and suicide. Sucide and euthanasia is interpreted quite differently, according to religion, laws and individual differences. Most of the nurses see euthanasia and suicide as a sin and most of them state that they will not assist euthanasia.


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