Over half of Americans continue to support physician-assisted suicide
for terminally ill patients with less than six months to live, according
to the Truven Health Analytics-NPR Health Poll. Truven Health Analytics
was formerly the Healthcare business of Thomson Reuters
Truven Health Analytics and NPR conduct a monthly poll to gauge
attitudes and opinions on a wide range of health issues.
The survey asked respondents to share their views on physician-assisted
suicide. The results were compared with data compiled from the same poll
questions asked a year ago and found that 55 percent of Americans
support physician-assisted suicide in the case of a terminally ill
patient with less than six months to live - the same proportion of those
who supported it a year ago. Of those who said they did not support
physician-assisted suicide for the terminally ill, 23 percent said a
physician should be allowed to provide the patient's family members with
the means to end the patient's life if requested by the patient or
family, up slightly from 2011.
When asked their thoughts on physician-assisted suicide in cases when a
patient is experiencing severe pain or severe disability, but is not
terminally ill, 29 percent said they supported physician-assisted
suicide - unchanged from 2011. Twenty eight percent of respondents who
did not support physician-assisted suicide for patients experiencing
severe pain or disability said a physician should be allowed to provide
patients or their family members with the means to end the patient's
life if requested by the patient or family - a slight decrease from 29
percent in 2011.
"As medical science advances, it is becoming more capable of mainaining
a life, even perhaps beyond the wishes of the patient and their family,"
said Raymond Fabius, M.D., chief medical officer at Truven Health
Analytics. "While this subject is difficult to discuss, it will be
increasingly relevant as time passes."
To date, the Truven Health Analytics-NPR Health Poll has explored
numerous health topics, including generic drugs, abortion, vaccines,
food allergies, and organic and genetically modified foods. NPR's
reports on the surveys are archived online at the Shots health blog here.
Truven Health Analytics maintains a library of poll results here.
The Truven Health Analytics-NPR Health Poll is powered by the Truven
Health PULSESM Healthcare Survey, the nation's largest and
longest-running independently funded, nationally representative
telephone poll that collects information about health-related behaviors
and attitudes and healthcare utilization from more than 100,000 US
households annually. Survey questions are developed in conjunction with
NPR. The figures in this month's poll are based on 3,017 participants
interviewed from July 1-13, 2011 and 3,006 participants interviewed from
October 1-11, 2012. The margin of error is 1.8 percent.
About Truven Health Analytics
Truven Health Analytics, formerly the Healthcare business of Thomson
Reuters, delivers unbiased information, analytic tools, benchmarks, and
services to the healthcare industry. Hospitals, government agencies,
employers, health plans, clinicians, pharmaceutical, and medical device
companies have relied on us for more than 30 years. We combine our deep
clinical, financial, and healthcare management expertise with innovative
technology platforms and information assets to make healthcare better by
collaborating with our customers to uncover and realize opportunities
for improving quality, efficiency, and outcomes. With more than 2,000
employees globally, we have major offices in Ann Arbor, Mich.; Chicago;
and Denver. Advantage Suite, Micromedex, ActionOI, MarketScan, and 100
Top Hospitals are registered trademarks or trademarks of Truven Health
Analytics. For more information, please visit www.truvenhealth.com.
NPR is an award-winning, multimedia news organization and an influential
force in American life. In collaboration with more than 900 independent
public radio stations nationwide, NPR strives to create a more informed
public - one challenged and invigorated by a deeper understanding and
appreciation of events, ideas and cultures.
[ Back To NFVZone's Homepage ]