Using Latent Profile Analysis to Understand Health Practitioners’ Attitudes Toward Voluntary Assisted Dying

Morgana Lizzio-Wilson, Emma F. Thomas, Winnifred R. Louis, Monique F. Crane, Madison Kho, Pascal Molenberghs, Susilo Wibisono, Kiara Minto, Catherine E. Amiot, Jean Decety, Lauren J. Breen, Kerrie Noonan, Liz Forbat, Felicity Allen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

Prior work has documented considerable diversity among health practitioners regarding their support for voluntary assisted dying (VAD). We examined whether their attitudes are characterised by different combinations of personal support, normative support by other health practitioners, and whether they are predisposed to vicariously experience others’ emotions (i.e., empathy). We also examined whether these profiles experienced different mental health outcomes (i.e., burnout and posttraumatic stress) in relation to VAD. To test this, 104 Australian health practitioners were surveyed after VAD was legalised in Victoria, Australia in 2019. Results indicated that practitioners’ attitudes were characterised by three profiles: 1) strong personal and normative support (strong VAD supporters), 2) moderate personal and normative support (moderate VAD supporters), and 3) lower personal and normative support (apprehensive practitioners). However, each profile reported similar mental health outcomes. Findings suggest that the normative environments in which health practitioners operate may explain their diverse attitudes on VAD.

Original languageEnglish
Number of pages29
JournalOmega (United States)
Early online date24 Feb 2023
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 24 Feb 2023

Keywords

  • assisted dying
  • end-of-life
  • health practitioners
  • latent profile analysis
  • mental health

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