The attitude of Greek student nurses toward euthanasia

Nick A. Bakalis, Nanouri Filippia, Ntzoufra Maria, Panagiotis Kiekkas


Purpose: Although the focus, on euthanasia, is often exclusively on the involvement of physicians, the involvement of nurses is also given much attention. The aim of the research was to determine and compare the attitude of Greek student nurses toward euthanasia throughout the duration of pre-registration nursing education.

Design: Descriptive study was used in order to determine and compare the attitude of Greek student nurses toward euthanasia.

Method: A valid and modified questionnaire was used, the Frommelt Attitude Toward Care of the Dying (FATCOD), for data collection. The sample constituted of 599 students.

Results: The majority of students evaluated their knowledge in euthanasia as ‘low’. Most students report that the nursing education prepares them from ‘few’ to ‘not at all’ for euthanasia. The students were negative about the legalisation of euthanasia in Greece. The most important factors that influence their decision about euthanasia were patients’ decision, the department protocols and personal belief.

Discussion and Conclusions: Although the cultural context is a significant issue in euthanasia, nurses professional rights in Greece should be modified and the educational programs need to be added with courses which will provide students nurses with stimuli and critical thinking abilities.

Implications for Practice: Nurses should have the appropriate scientific and moral knowledge and skills to cope with the complicated and continuous clinical-ethical dilemmas.


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Journal of Nursing Education and Practice

ISSN 1925-4040 (Print)   ISSN 1925-4059 (Online)

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