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What Their Terms of Living and Dying Might Be: Hospice Social Workers Discuss Oregon's Death with Dignity Act
Journal of Social Work in End-of-Life & Palliative Care (2012)
  • Elizabeth M. Norton, Portland State University
  • Pamela J. Miller, Portland State University
This article presents data from a qualitative study of nine social work hospice practitioners and experts as they discuss Oregon's Death with Dignity Act. Three themes emerged from the analysis: (a) values regarding physician-assisted death; (b) agency policies about the option; and (c) the role of hospice social workers with physician-assisted death. Three states now allow terminally ill persons to obtain a lethal prescription if criteria are met. Two other states are actively considering and may pass similar legislation over time. Hospice social work practitioners work with patients and families as they consider this option and their voices reflect the complexities and nuances of these interactions.
  • Terminal care -- Decision making,
  • Oregon. Death with Dignity Act,
  • Assisted suicide,
  • Terminal illness -- Qualitative research
Publication Date
Publisher Statement
Copyright © 2012 Taylor & Francis
Citation Information
Norton, E. M., & Miller, P. J. (2012). What their terms of living and dying might be: Hospice social workers discuss Oregon’s Death with Dignity Act. Journal of Social Work in End-of-Life and Palliative Care, 8(3), 249-264.