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Editor's Correspondence
July 24, 2000

Medical Students' Opinions of Euthanasia and Physician-Assisted Suicide in Italy

Arch Intern Med. 2000;160(14):2226. doi:

Euthanasia and physician-assisted suicide (E/PAS) issues have recently concentrated the attention of medical research, with the majority of studies documenting general agreement for legislation permitting these practices for patients with incurable terminal illnesses.13 This area has received less attention in Italy, where the law prosecutes those who practice E/PAS and the Italian Code of Medical Practice is openly against E/PAS, stating that "the physician, even if requested by the patient, should not use tools aimed at reducing the patients' psychic and physical integrity, hastening his/her death or causing his/her death."4 However, recent research has shown that among palliative care physicians,5 general practitioners, and hospital physicians6,7 one third are in favor of E/PAS.

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