Document Type

Thesis - Open Access

Award Date

1972

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Department

Sociology and Rural Studies

Abstract

The problem under investigation in this study is: "What are the attitudes of professional nurses in designated hospitals in South Dakota toward the practice of passive and active euthanasia, and how do these attitudes vary when controlled for selected social and institutional factors?" Research related to this problem is important in that recent permissive legislative action on the abortion issue caught the nursing profession unprepared, and it is presently attempting to establish a position. To avoid a similar situation on the euthanasia issue, data regarding the current attitudes of nurses concerning the preservation of life and the management of the terminal patient may be beneficial. Further, as indicated by a recent RN survey, 95 percent of 1,111 hospitals participating in the survey reported there was no physician in the coronary care unit at all times. This would suggest that the professional nurse is being placed in situations where she is having to make decisions that affect the life ·of the patient. Therefore, extensive study into the attitudes of the professional nurse appears appropriate so that wise planning, awareness and education can occur. The objectives of this study are to determine: 1. The attitudes of professional nurses in designated hospitals in South Dakota toward the practice of passive and active euthanasia. 2. The variations observed in attitudes of professional nurses toward the support of passive euthanasia legislation when controlling for selected nominally defined social factors. 3. The extent to which observed variations in selected social, demographic and attitudinal factors contribute to the explanation of the variations in the respondent’s willingness to support legislation favoring the practice of passive euthanasia.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Nurses -- South Dakota
Euthanasia

Format

application/pdf

Number of Pages

135

Publisher

South Dakota State University

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