Seema Daud, Aftab Anjum, Bushra Khurram Bhatti.
Perceptions of Medical Students about End of Life Palliative Care.
Pak J Med Health Sci Jan ;6(4):812-6.

Objective: To determine awareness and perceptions about end of life palliative care among medical students. Study design: Descriptive cross-sectional study. Place of study: Lahore Medical & Dental College (LMDC), Lahore. Duration of study: Three months, from January to March, 2012. Material and method: A structured questionnaire was used to obtain the required information from students. Out of 500 students registered in first to final year MBBS classes, 435 participated in the study. The variables studied included, age, gender, year of study, awareness about end of life palliative care, perceptions about preferred method of palliative care, disseminating information about it and perceptions about death and dying. Data was entered and cleaned in SPSS 19 statistical package. Data was presented in the form of tables and graphs. Results: In the present study, 251(57%) were females, 219(50%) were either 20 years old or younger and 216(50%) were 21 years old or older. The representation from various classes was 130(30%) from 1st year, 78(18%) from 2nd year, 86(20%) from 3rd year, 90(21%) from 4thyear and 51(30%) from final year. Regarding palliative care, 70% committed that they had knowledge about it. The preferred source of palliative care information were friend or relative receiving palliative care (76%), television or internet (35%) and discussion among friends (25%). Regarding the types palliative care that must be provided, most frequent suggestions were domiciliary services for control of pain and other symptoms (54%), discussion about hopes, fears, anxieties and beliefs (45%), day and night nursing help at home (30%) and telephonic support and advice to patients and families (20%). Nearly all respondents agreed that awareness about palliative care should be widespread and 57% of students preferred that information on this topic should be generally available. Only 44% of students thought they death & dying is discussed in the right amount. Conclusion: There was generalized awareness about end of life palliative care among MBBS students, which was mostly due to personal experience, discussion with friends and exposure to electronic media.

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