Abstract/Details

Euthanasia and the elderly


1995 1995

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Abstract (summary)

By using a cross-sectional survey, this research study examines the ethical dilemma of euthanasia among a non-probability sample of 329 community-based, culturally and religious affiliated diversified elderly, from two types of environments: 216 elderly from fifteen different community sites and 113 elderly who are home-bound elderly. The principles of autonomy, beneficience, and nonmaleficence are explored as they relate to the dilemma of euthanasia and to the conflicting experiences among the elderly, family members, health care professionals, and society. The research in this study presents the trends of these ethical principles as they are encompassed in the ethical dilemma of euthanasia from the collection of data through historical developments, empirical studies, and population polls.

The theoretical framework of the research is based upon Beuchamp and Childress's conceptualization of the principles: autonomy, beneficience, and nonmaleficence of bioethics. Within this framework, this study defines the concepts of euthanasia, develops the hypotheses, and explains the contributing factors which influence the attitude towards euthanasia among the community-based elderly.

The contributing factors of life satisfaction, health, education, religiosity, and living arrangements are statistically measured at the p = $<$.05 level of significance by utilizing a variety of Analysis of Variance (ANOVAS), as well as correlation and regression analysis. Findings in the covariate analysis indicate the major contributing factors, life satisfaction, and religiosity as having a strong impact upon the attitude towards euthanasia among the elderly, whereas the correlation and regression analysis indicate religiosity, alone, as the major contributing factor. The results of the multiple regression analysis indicate that 11% of the variance is explained among all the variables and 6% of this variance is explained by the variable, total religiosity, as having the most effect on attitudes towards euthanasia among the elderly. Implications provide insight about intervention in education, policy-making, community action, and research for social workers and health care professionals. These implications will enable these professionals to target the specific long-term needs which will enhance the quality of life for the elderly as they continue to "age in place."

Indexing (details)


Subject
Social work;
Gerontology;
Religion;
Philosophy
Classification
0452: Social work
0351: Gerontology
0322: Religion
0322: Philosophy
Identifier / keyword
Philosophy, religion and theology; Social sciences
Title
Euthanasia and the elderly
Author
Himchak, Maureen V.
Number of pages
213
Publication year
1995
Degree date
1995
School code
0072
Source
DAI-A 56/05, Dissertation Abstracts International
Place of publication
Ann Arbor
Country of publication
United States
University/institution
Fordham University
University location
United States -- New York
Degree
D.S.W.
Source type
Dissertations & Theses
Language
English
Document type
Dissertation/Thesis
Dissertation/thesis number
9532082
ProQuest document ID
304197189
Copyright
Database copyright ProQuest LLC; ProQuest does not claim copyright in the individual underlying works.
Document URL
http://search.proquest.com/docview/304197189
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