Yanna Van Wesemael, Joachim Cohen, Bregje D. Onwuteaka‐Philipsen, Johan Bilsen, Wim Distelmans, Luc Deliens
To describe role and involvement of Life End Information Forum (LEIF) physicians in end‐of‐life care decisions and euthanasia in Flanders.
All 132 LEIF physicians in Belgium received a questionnaire inquiring about their activities in the past year, and their end‐of‐life care training and experience.
Response rate was 75 percent. Most respondents followed substantive training in end‐of‐life care. In 1 year, LEIF physicians were contacted 612 times for consultations in end‐of‐life decisions, of which 355 concerned euthanasia requests eventually resulting in 221 euthanasia cases. LEIF physicians also gave information about various end‐of‐life issues (including palliative care) to patients and colleagues.
LEIF physicians provide a forum for information and advice for physicians and patients. A similar health service providing support to physicians for all end‐of‐life decisions could also be beneficial for countries without a euthanasia law.