Physician-Assisted Dying: Most Patients Have Cancer
Roxanne Nelson, BSN, RN
Last year, Canada joined a small but growing number of countries and US states in legalizing physician-assisted dying.
A new paper, reporting on the experience to date at a large healthcare system in Toronto, Ontario, found that three quarters of patients inquiring about the program had cancer, and for various reasons, only 26% actually received the intervention.
The paper is published online May 25 in the New England Journal of Medicine.
The degree to which physician-assisted dying has become “normalized,” both in their network and throughout Canada, “was unexpected,” especially considering the degree of controversy that preceded passage of the law, note the authors. . . [Full text]