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Alert Mental Capacity Act Survey

ComRes interviewed 6,130 GB adults aged 18+, including 1,358 disabled British adults aged 18+, online between 8th and 16th January 2014. Data were weighted to be representative of all GB adults aged 18+. ComRes is a member of the British Polling Council and abides by its rules. 


Date Published: 30 Jan 2014

Categories: Health | Public and communities | Public Sector | Social | UK


A new survey has found public support for a change in the law to stop medical professionals from withdrawing fluids from mentally-incapacitated patients who have stipulated in advance that they do not wish to die of dehydration.

The online poll of 6,130 adults found that nearly three-fifths (58 per cent) of those questioned wanted the law to be changed so patients cannot be left to die of dehydration if they had requested to be given water before they lost their ability to communicate.

Fewer than one in five (17 per cent) wanted no change in the law while a quarter (25 per cent) said they did not have an opinion.

Among elderly (aged 65 and over) and disabled people the majority of those who believe the law should be changed to allow patients to request fluids rose to 62 and 61 per cent respectively, according to the results of the poll by ComRes.


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