Place of death and circumstances of dying

: Studies in a metropolitan, national and international context

Student thesis: Doctoral Thesis


Place of death statistics became a symbol
of the social movements for palliative care
and dignified dying that emerged in the
1950s and 1960s in the UK and the USA,
criticizing the medicalization of terminal
illness and death and the inhumane
curative care approach at the end of many
people’s lives. These movements strived
for a palliative and humane approach of
end-of-life care, relieving suffering and
respecting the choices and increasing
autonomy of the dying, to guarantee a
death in dignity.
In this dissertation place of death is looked
at as a way of considering the quality of
end-of-life care and the circumstances of
death and dying cross-nationally in specific
disease groups such as cancer and
dementia-related diseases, in metropolitan
populations as compared to non
metropolitan populations, and to evaluate
health care policies with respect to
palliative care services and care for the elderly.
Date of Award24 May 2011
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • Vrije Universiteit Brussel
SupervisorLuc Deliens (Promotor), Joachim Cohen (Co-promotor), Lieve Van den Block (Jury), Dirk Devroey (Jury), Patrick Deboosere (Jury), Donna Wilson (Jury), Agnes Van Der Heide (Jury) & Freddy Mortier (Jury)


  • palliative care
  • end-of-life care

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