Attitudes towards physician-assisted suicide and euthanasia in Spanish university students

Maria Sol Rodriguez-Calvo, José Luis Soto, Isabel María Martínez-Silva, Fernando Vázquez-Portomeñe, José Ignacio Muñoz-Barús


Attitudes toward physician-assisted death among medical students differ between populations. The aim of this study was to explore attitudes towards euthanasia and physician-assisted suicide among Spanish university students. A cross-sectional survey was conducted by asking undergraduate students (Medicine, Nursing and Law) of the University of Santiago de Compostela to complete an anonymous 17-item questionnaire. Most participants exhibited a positive attitude towards physician-assisted suicide (54%) and euthanasia (75%), as well as towards their legalization. Attitudes were consistent with the underlying ethical reasoning, with no differences in terms of age, gender or academic degree. In addition, consistency was found between attitudes and willingness to participate in physician-assisted suicide and euthanasia, should they be legal. The results showed that the attitudes of medical students towards euthanasia and physician-assisted suicide were positive and similar to non-medical students.



Bioethics. Students. Physicians. Suicide, assisted. Euthanasia. Death. Attitude. Behavior.

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