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DSM staff profile

Jessica Young

PositionPhD Candidate
DepartmentDepartment of General Practice and Rural Health (DSM)
QualificationsBPhEd(Hons) MPhEd
Research summaryPerspectives of people approachiing the end of life on euthanasia / assisted dying
MembershipsMember, Sociological Association of Aotearoa New Zealand

Research

PhD abstract

Euthanasia and assisted dying are of national interest and globally significant issues given the current proposed law change. However, the views of those approaching the end of life who would consider choosing an assisted death, if it were available to them, is missing from the discourse in New Zealand.

This research is an open enquiry into the perspectives of people with a terminal, incurable, degenerative or progressive illness who want or would consider an assisted death. No research with this cohort has been conducted in NZ to date. I would like my research to fill this gap and add to the knowledge about assisted dying from the perspectives of people nearing the end of life. One of the aims of my PhD is to theorise the ‘wish to hasten death’ in New Zealand.

I recruited 14 participants through the media. Participants consisted of eight females and six males, aged between 34 and 82. Twelve identified as Pākehā and two as Māori. I interviewed people about why they would consider hastening their death.

I am drawing on interpretive and social constructivist frameworks to understand how people make sense of their experiences and end of life choice.

Those with shortened life expectancy are an important group to talk to because they are faced with their own mortality and are in the best position to know how they feel about assisted dying. Research that explores New Zealander’s explanations and motivations for considering an assisted death, is necessary to shed light on our unique local context and inform societal and political debate.

More about Jessica

Jessica is supervised by researchers from the Department of General Practice and Rural Health, Department of Preventive and Social Medicine, and the Bioethics Centre.

She is a PhD Candidate and Research Fellow at the Dunedin School of Medicine, University of Otago, and is an emerging qualitative researcher working in the field of healthcare. Her background and research expertise lie at the intersection of sociology with medicine, health and illness. She has been working as a researcher in the Department of General Practice and Rural Health, Dunedin School of Medicine since 2012. Jessica has researched and published on patient’s care networks, ageing, longevity, weight discourses and medical education. Find her on Twitter @JessYoungTweets.

Jessica is involved in a number of studies:

  • Engaging the public using citizens' deliberation on euthanasia and assisted dying legislation change
  • Medical education research about the Safe and Effective Clinical Outcomes Clinic
  • Person-centred social network health delivery research on the concept of 'Communities of Clinical Practice'
  • MUSSALS (Medically Unexplained Symptoms And Living Successfully)

Publications

Jaye, C., Lomax-Sawyers, I., Young, J., & Egan, R. (2019). The people speak: Social media on euthanasia/assisted dying. Medical Humanities. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1136/medhum-2018-011565

Young, J., Jaye, C., Egan, T., Williamson, M., Askerud, A., Radue, P., & Penese, M. (2018). Communities of clinical practice in action: Doing whatever it takes. Health: An Interdisciplinary Journal for the Social Study of Health, Illness & Medicine, 22(2), 109-127. doi: 10.1177/1363459316688515

Jaye, C., Young, J., Egan, T., & Williamson, M. (2018). Moral economy and moral capital in the community of clinical practice. Qualitative Health Research, 28(4), 523-533. doi: 10.1177/1049732317740347

McKinlay, E., Young, J., & Gray, B. (2018). General practice and patients' views of the social networks of patients with multimorbidity. Journal of Primary Health Care. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1071/HC17050

Jaye, C., Young, J., Egan, R., Llewellyn, R., Cunningham, W., & Radue, P. (2018). The healthy lifestyle in longevity narratives. Social Theory & Health, 16(4), 361-378. doi: 10.1057/s41285-018-0062-9

Journal - Research Article

Jaye, C., Lomax-Sawyers, I., Young, J., & Egan, R. (2019). The people speak: Social media on euthanasia/assisted dying. Medical Humanities. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1136/medhum-2018-011565

Young, J., Jaye, C., Egan, T., Williamson, M., Askerud, A., Radue, P., & Penese, M. (2018). Communities of clinical practice in action: Doing whatever it takes. Health: An Interdisciplinary Journal for the Social Study of Health, Illness & Medicine, 22(2), 109-127. doi: 10.1177/1363459316688515

Jaye, C., Young, J., Egan, R., Llewellyn, R., Cunningham, W., & Radue, P. (2018). The healthy lifestyle in longevity narratives. Social Theory & Health, 16(4), 361-378. doi: 10.1057/s41285-018-0062-9

McKinlay, E., Young, J., & Gray, B. (2018). General practice and patients' views of the social networks of patients with multimorbidity. Journal of Primary Health Care. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1071/HC17050

Jaye, C., Young, J., Egan, T., & Williamson, M. (2018). Moral economy and moral capital in the community of clinical practice. Qualitative Health Research, 28(4), 523-533. doi: 10.1177/1049732317740347

Hall, K. H., Michael, J., Jaye, C., & Young, J. (2018). General practitioners' ethical decision-making: Does being a patient themselves make a difference? Clinical Ethics. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1177/1477750918790019

Young, J., Egan, R., Walker, S., Graham-DeMello, A., & Jackson, C. (2018). The euthanasia debate: Synthesising the evidence on New Zealander's attitudes. Kōtuitui. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1080/1177083X.2018.1532915

Young, J., Jaye, C., Williamson, M., & Egan, T. (2017). The valuing of 'good care' within neoliberal times: The importance of relationship activities. New Zealand Sociology, 32(2), 81-104.

Llewellyn, R., Jaye, C., Egan, R., Cunningham, W., Young, J., & Radue, P. (2017). Living into death: A case for an iterative, fortified and cross-sector approach to advance care planning. Anthropology & Medicine, 24(3), 350-365. doi: 10.1080/13648470.2017.1285000

Llewellyn, R., Jaye, C., Egan, R., Cunningham, W., Young, J., & Radue, P. (2017). Employing imaginative rationality: Using metaphor when discussing death [Brief report]. Journal of Medical Humanities, 43(1), 71-72. doi: 10.1136/medhum-2016-011014

Llewellyn, R., Cunningham, W., Jaye, C., Young, J., Egan, R., & Radue, P. (2017). 'Why worry about something you can't control?': Negotiated risk, longevity and health behaviours. Health: An Interdisciplinary Journal for the Social Study of Health, Illness & Medicine, 21(3), 259-277. doi: 10.1177/1363459317695869

Young, J., Egan, T., Jaye, C., Williamson, M., Askerud, A., Radue, P., & Penese, M. (2017). Shared care requires a shared vision: Communities of clinical practice in a primary care setting. Journal of Clinical Nursing, 26(17-18), 2689-2702. doi: 10.1111/jocn.13762

Young, J. E., Williamson, M. I., & Egan, T. G. (2016). Students' reflections on the relationships between safe learning environments, learning challenge and positive experiences of learning in a simulated GP clinic. Advances in Health Sciences Education, 21(1), 63-77. doi: 10.1007/s10459-015-9611-3

Llewellyn, R., Jaye, C., Egan, R., Cunningham, W., Young, J., & Radue, P. (2016). Cracking open death: Death conversations in primary care. Journal of Primary Health Care, 8(4), 303-311. doi: 10.1071/HC15058

Young, J., Egan, T., Williamson, M., Jaye, C., Kenrick, K., Ross, J., & Radue, P. (2016). An exercise to map patient-centred care networks. Clinical Teacher, 13(6), 448-450. doi: 10.1111/tct.12459

Jaye, C., Hale, B., Butler, M., McKechnie, R., Robertson, L., Simpson, J., Tordoff, J., & Young, J. (2015). One of us: Stories from two New Zealand rest homes. Journal of Aging Studies, 35, 135-143. doi: 10.1016/j.jaging.2015.08.010

Young, J., & Burrows, L. (2013). Finding the ‘self’ after weight loss surgery: Two women’s experiences. Feminism & Psychology, 23(4), 498-516. doi: 10.1177/0959353513500471

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Journal - Research Other

Egan, T. G., Jaye, C., Young, J., & Williamson, M. (2017). Re: Margaret McCartney: The social care system has become inherently unsafe: Putting social care on the map. BMJ, 357, j2329. doi: 10.1136/bmj.j2329

Young, J. (2016). Rethinking how we see and respond to fatness [Guest editorial]. Journal of Primary Health Care, 8(4), 281-282. doi: 10.1071/HCv8n4_ED2

More publications...