Religion plays an important role in opinions on euthanasia. 98 percent of those who do not belong to a religious denomination or ideological group say they support euthanasia in some circumstances. This share is smaller among those who do practice a religion, with considerable differences between the denominations. Muslims are relatively likely to oppose euthanasia; over 4 in 10 are of the opinion that euthanasia should never be allowed.
|Religie||Euthanasia should not be allowed (% of adults)||Euthanasia should be allowed under certain circumstances (% of adults)||No answer (% of adults)|
80 percent in favour of allowing euthanasia in case of advanced dementia
80 percent of the adult population agree with euthanasia for patients with advanced dementia if they requested this previously in full consciousness. With a share of around 75 percent, a fairly large number of people support the option of euthanasia for terminally ill children and people with severe mental disorders. There is significantly less support in cases where people feel tired of life while being in good physical health. Over half (55 percent) of adults feel that euthanasia should be allowed for this group, while nearly one-third (32 percent) are opposed to this.
|Situatie||Euthanasia should be allowed (% of adults)||Euthanasia should not be allowed (% of adults)||No answer (% of adults)|
|Severe mental disorders||73.7||13.5||12.8|
|Terminally ill children||75.1||11.1||13.8|
|People who are tired of life||54.8||31.8||13.4|
No unanimity about physician’s role
Four out of 10 adults think that a physician should be able to refuse a request for euthanasia, even if the patient in question meets all criteria for euthanasia. An almost equally large group believe that a physician may not refuse in this case.
Of those who feel that a medical doctor is allowed to refuse a euthanasia request, nearly 8 in 10 state that the physician should then provide a referral to another physician. Over 1 in 10 find that this is not a physician’s obligation, while an equally large group do not know or do not wish to respond.
In 2018, the Regional Euthanasia Review Committees received 6,126 notifications of euthanasia. This is 4 percent of the total number of people who died in the Netherlands in that year.