40pc sup­port choice

Townsville Bulletin - - News -

MORE than 40 per cent of Aus­tralians would ‘‘ take the op­tion of euthana­sia if avail­able’’ if they were ter­mi­nally ill with just weeks to live, a poll has in­di­cated.

The re­search, com­mis­sioned by Alzheimer’s Aus­tralia, also sug­gests strong sup­port for the per­mit­ted, though legally fraught, op­tion of re­fus­ing treat­ment ‘‘ even if this means they would die sooner’’.

The on­line poll in­volved 2505 Aus­tralians and was un­der­taken in Oc­to­ber last year. While it fo­cused on de­men­tia, re­spon­dents were asked what they would want if they were ter­mi­nally ill with only a few weeks to live.

More than half ( 54 per cent) said they would want to write ‘‘ ad­vance care di­rec­tives’’ while still men­tally com­pe­tent.

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