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Euthanasia and assisted suicide for people with an intellectual disability and/or autism spectrum disorder: an examination of nine relevant euthanasia cases in the Netherlands (2012–2016)

Overview of attention for article published in BMC Medical Ethics, March 2018
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About this Attention Score

  • In the top 5% of all research outputs scored by Altmetric
  • One of the highest-scoring outputs from this source (#4 of 684)
  • High Attention Score compared to outputs of the same age (98th percentile)

Mentioned by

news
7 news outlets
blogs
4 blogs
twitter
114 tweeters
facebook
3 Facebook pages

Citations

dimensions_citation
13 Dimensions

Readers on

mendeley
81 Mendeley
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Title
Euthanasia and assisted suicide for people with an intellectual disability and/or autism spectrum disorder: an examination of nine relevant euthanasia cases in the Netherlands (2012–2016)
Published in
BMC Medical Ethics, March 2018
DOI 10.1186/s12910-018-0257-6
Pubmed ID
Authors

Irene Tuffrey-Wijne, Leopold Curfs, Ilora Finlay, Sheila Hollins

Abstract

Euthanasia and assisted suicide (EAS) have been legally possible in the Netherlands since 2001, provided that statutory due care criteria are met, including: (a) voluntary and well-considered request; (b) unbearable suffering without prospect of improvement; (c) informing the patient; (d) lack of a reasonable alternative; (e) independent second physician's opinion. 'Unbearable suffering' must have a medical basis, either somatic or psychiatric, but there is no requirement of limited life expectancy. All EAS cases must be reported and are scrutinised by regional review committees (RTE). The purpose of this study was to investigate whether any particular difficulties arise when the EAS due care criteria are applied to patients with an intellectual disability and/or autism spectrum disorder. The 416 case summaries available on the RTE website (2012-2016) were searched for intellectual disability (6) and autism spectrum disorder (3). Direct content analysis was used on these nine cases. Assessment of decisional capacity was mentioned in eight cases, but few details given; in two cases, there had been uncertainty or disagreement about capacity. Two patients had progressive somatic conditions. For most, suffering was due to an inability to cope with changing circumstances or increasing dependency; in several cases, suffering was described in terms of characteristics of living with an autism spectrum disorder, rather than an acquired medical condition. Some physicians struggled to understand the patient's perspective. Treatment refusal was a common theme, leading physicians to conclude that EAS was the only remaining option. There was a lack of detail on social circumstances and how patients were informed about their prognosis. Autonomy and decisional capacity are highly complex for patients with intellectual disabilities and difficult to assess; capacity tests in these cases did not appear sufficiently stringent. Assessment of suffering is particularly difficult for patients who have experienced life-long disability. The sometimes brief time frames and limited number of physician-patient meetings may not be sufficient to make a decision as serious as EAS. The Dutch EAS due care criteria are not easily applied to people with intellectual disabilities and/or autism spectrum disorder, and do not appear to act as adequate safeguards.

Twitter Demographics

The data shown below were collected from the profiles of 114 tweeters who shared this research output. Click here to find out more about how the information was compiled.

Mendeley readers

The data shown below were compiled from readership statistics for 81 Mendeley readers of this research output. Click here to see the associated Mendeley record.

Geographical breakdown

Country Count As %
Unknown 81 100%

Demographic breakdown

Readers by professional status Count As %
Student > Master 16 20%
Researcher 14 17%
Student > Bachelor 11 14%
Student > Ph. D. Student 9 11%
Student > Doctoral Student 6 7%
Other 15 19%
Unknown 10 12%
Readers by discipline Count As %
Medicine and Dentistry 22 27%
Psychology 20 25%
Nursing and Health Professions 11 14%
Social Sciences 8 10%
Neuroscience 2 2%
Other 6 7%
Unknown 12 15%

Attention Score in Context

This research output has an Altmetric Attention Score of 162. This is our high-level measure of the quality and quantity of online attention that it has received. This Attention Score, as well as the ranking and number of research outputs shown below, was calculated when the research output was last mentioned on 21 February 2020.
All research outputs
#115,350
of 15,565,117 outputs
Outputs from BMC Medical Ethics
#4
of 684 outputs
Outputs of similar age
#4,495
of 278,419 outputs
Outputs of similar age from BMC Medical Ethics
#1
of 1 outputs
Altmetric has tracked 15,565,117 research outputs across all sources so far. Compared to these this one has done particularly well and is in the 99th percentile: it's in the top 5% of all research outputs ever tracked by Altmetric.
So far Altmetric has tracked 684 research outputs from this source. They typically receive a lot more attention than average, with a mean Attention Score of 14.5. This one has done particularly well, scoring higher than 99% of its peers.
Older research outputs will score higher simply because they've had more time to accumulate mentions. To account for age we can compare this Altmetric Attention Score to the 278,419 tracked outputs that were published within six weeks on either side of this one in any source. This one has done particularly well, scoring higher than 98% of its contemporaries.
We're also able to compare this research output to 1 others from the same source and published within six weeks on either side of this one. This one has scored higher than all of them