Fewer Oncologists Support Assisted Suicide

The number of cancer specialists who support the use of physician-assisted suicide is declining, according to a new survey presented at the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) annual meeting. A recent survey found that 22% of oncologists support physician-assisted suicide for patients in unremitting pain, down from the 45% of cancer specialists who said they supported assisted-suicide in a similar survey conducted 3 years ago.

BMJ 1998;316:1473-1480 ( 16 May )

COMMENT: It is encouraging to see that more cancer specialists have decided killing their terminal patients is not consistent with the values of life.

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