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Document Type

Thesis - University Access Only

Award Date


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Graduate Nursing

First Advisor

Kay Foland


euthanasia, nuse attitudes in South Dakota


The purpose of this study was to identify the perceptions of South Dakota nurses toward active and passive euthanasia. Societal and personal factors, political and religious views, the responders' years of practice, primary area of practice, knowledge of patient autonomy, and knowledge of active and passive euthanasia were analyzed.
The South Dakota Terminal Patient Study was used to collect data. The survey instrument was published in the June, 1997 South Dakota Nurse. Licensed practical nurses (LPNs) and registered nurses (RNs) licensed by the South Dakota Board of Nursing received the instrument.
There was no relationship between the years of practice and areas of practice when compared to the attitude of nurses towards euthanasia. Twenty-one percent of the respondents supported active euthanasia in carefully selected patients (N=210). One hundred seventy-one nurses, or 81.4% strongly agreed that patients should have the right to request and received pain reducing drugs even though the effective dose may hasten death.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Nurses -- South Dakota -- Attitudes



Number of Pages



South Dakota State University


Copyright © 1998 Margery Wouden. All rights reserved