ATTITUDES TOWARD DEATH AND BRAIN DEATH AMONG TURKEY'S PHYSICIANS: A BRIEF RESEARCH REPORT


Hot I. , Vatanoğlu E., Dirican A. , Doğan H.

OMEGA-JOURNAL OF DEATH AND DYING, vol.59, no.4, pp.339-349, 2009 (Journal Indexed in SSCI) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 59 Issue: 4
  • Publication Date: 2009
  • Doi Number: 10.2190/om.59.4.d
  • Journal Name: OMEGA-JOURNAL OF DEATH AND DYING
  • Journal Indexes: Social Sciences Citation Index (SSCI), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.339-349
  • Istanbul University Affiliated: Yes

Abstract

Brain death is a relatively new concept that became topical as a result of organ transplantation, Debate about this concept is currently continuing. This study was carried out to determine the attitudes of physicians toward brain death and to examine the effect of religion and education on the issue. Eight-hundred physicians who were randomly selected from 6 different cities in Turkey were questioned: 23.7% of physicians do not regard brain death as real death; 76.8% of relatives of these physicians' patients said that they have difficulty in understanding brain death. The reason for this is that brain death is an artificial concept created to meet the needs of organ transplantation. However, physicians are of the opinion that the attitudes toward death and brain death can be changed by education. In conclusion, the authors suggest that the brain death issue must be discussed by physicians, other professionals in Turkish society, and the general public so to reach a better concensus.