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Latest additions to web site: 6/18/18
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“California appeals court reinstates law allowing terminally ill patients to end their lives”
(Los Angeles Times — June 15, 2018)
The ruling by the 4th District Court of Appeals allows the controversial law known as the End of Life Option Act to remain in effect, giving patients who have less than six months to live access to lethal medications from their doctors.
Opponents of the law have until July 2 to file a petition opposing the court’s decision….
California’s law granting patients the right to assisted suicide took effect in 2016.
More on California

American Medical Association Position Remains Unchanged
The AMA’s House of Delegates voted on Monday, June 11, to continue study of two recommendations related to physician-assisted suicide.

The organization’s Council on Ethical and Judicial Affairs (CEJA) had recommended that the AMA continue its opposition to assisted suicide.  Additionally, it had recommended that “assisted suicide” should be called what it is — “assisted suicide.”
Text of the full resolution on the recommendations.

Advocates of assisted suicide had lobbied heavily to have the recommendations rejected.  Instead, the House of Delegates sent both recommendations back for further review.  They will be discussed over the next year and a vote will be taken again at the 2019 House of Delegates meeting.

In the meantime, the AMA remains opposed to assisted suicide and will continue to call it what it is — “assisted suicide.”

Comparison of State Laws Permitting Doctor-Prescribed Suicide (5/18)

“‘Terminal’: What does it mean?”
Doctors who favor doctor-prescribed suicide are prescribing the lethal drugs for patients who could live for decades. 

2018 Doctor-Prescribed Suicide Bills Proposed or Carried Over from 2017
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Scroll down for other Recent Developments, and for Featured Articles.

For a listing of all categories on this web site, see Site Map.
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The Latest PRC Update (2018 – Volume 32, No. 2):

  • New AMA report recommends opposition to physician-assisted suicide
  • Judge overturns California’s 2-year-old assisted-suicide law
  • Ten states reject prescribed-suicide bills; one state votes bill into law
  • Other states with active bills
  • Alfie Evans: A Case of Medical Authoritarian Power
    View as plain text.  View as PDF

Who will speak for you?
Imagine you are in an accident tomorrow and so seriously injured that you aren’t able to communicate about your health care wishes for several weeks. Who would make health care decisions for you during that time? Do you need an advance directive?

To obtain a durable power of attorney for health care for the state in which you are a resident, call the Patients Rights Council (800-958-5678 or 740-282-3810) between 8:30am and 4:30pm (eastern time).
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Recent Major Developments

“California appeals court reinstates law allowing terminally ill patients to end their lives”
(Los Angeles Times — June 15, 2018)
The ruling by the 4th District Court of Appeals allows the controversial law known as the End of Life Option Act to remain in effect, giving patients who have less than six months to live access to lethal medications from their doctors.
Opponents of the law have until July 2 to file a petition opposing the court’s decision….
California’s law granting patients the right to assisted suicide took effect in 2016.
More on California

“JUDGE REBUFFS EFFORT TO RESTORE ACCESS TO LIFE-ENDING DRUG”
(Mercury News — May 31, 2018)
A Riverside Superior Court judge on Wednesday morning rebuffed an effort to restore California’s End of Life Options Act….
So the state must try again.  The next motion — urging the judge to cancel a ruling last week invalidating the law — is set for June 29….
Meanwhile, major hospital systems such as Stanford, Kaiser Permanente, UC-San Francisco, John Muir, and California Pacific Medical Center are suspending access to the medication which has been legal for the past seven months.
More on California

“COURT UPHOLDS RULING AGAINST CALIFORNIA’S ASSISTED SUICIDE LAW”
(NPR — May 24, 2018)
An appeals court has let stand a lower court ruling overturning a California law that allows physicians to prescribe life-ending drugs to the terminally ill.  California’s Fourth District Court of Appeals on Wednesday refused to stay last week’s decision….
California Attorney General Xavier Becerra had sought to block the earlier ruling….
More on California

“JUDGE OVERTURNS CALIFORNIA’S ASSISTED SUICIDE LAW”
(Mercury News — May 15, 2016)
Riverside County Superior Court Judge Daniel A. Ottolia ruled that the Legislature violated the state constitution by passing the 2015 law during a special session called to address emergency needs in the state’s health care system…
More on California

“‘Miracle’ Boy, 13, Who Was Apparently Brain Dead Wakes After Parents Sign Organ Donation Papers”
(People Magazine — May 6, 2018)
Trenton McKinley defied all the odds.  After the 13-year-old boy was severely injured in a dune buggy accident, his parents made the difficult decision to donate his organs following  days of him being apparently brain dead, according to Fox 10.  But, after the papers were signed, he miraculously regained consciousness.
More on Organ Donation
More on Death & Brain Death

For additional articles and information, see Site Map.

Featured Articles

“Risk of coercion too high to OK assisted suicide”
(The Daily Star — May 14, 2018)
Comparing people with a terminal prognosis to a pet that is “unable to care for itself and is in constant pain” raises understandable concerns among disabled people who need personal care services like me.  When it comes to killing our pets, studies show it’s more about putting them out of the owner’s misery than the pet’s….
So let’s stop conflating pets and people.  In a society with an alarming increase in elder abuse, the risks of coercion and foul play should be obvious.  There are no “safeguards” that work behind closed doors.
More on Disability Perspective
More on New York

“‘Dr. Death’ Philip Nitschke tells what really happens in suicide clinics”
(Starts at 60 — May 4, 2018)
Nitschke said he’d like elderly people over a certain age to be offered the drugs, (which could be kept securely at their homes), should they ever wish to take them.
“If we had a model whereby people over the age of 70 were issued the drugs, and they had to be secured in the house, then it’s no more dangerous than having rat poison in the house,” he added.
More on Australia

“Pain Doctors Face Greater Scrutiny Than Death Doctors”
(National Review — May 3, 2018)
At a time when assisted-suicide pushers fear-monger about unrelieved pain as a reason to legalize doctor-prescribed death, physicians are so afraid of the feds they leave some pain patients in the lurch, thereby unintentionally pushing them toward suicide — assisted and otherwise.
More on pain control

“Hospitals Pulling the Plug against Families’ Wishes”
(Townhall — April 25, 2018)
Who decides whether  your sick child lives or dies?
Alfie [Evans] isn’t  the first child sentenced to die by a British hospital…
Can it happen in the U.S.?  You bet.  It depends on what state you live in.
More on Futile Care
More on United Kingdom

“Assisted Suicide: Rhetoric v. Reality”
(Patients Rights Council)
Proponents of doctor-prescribed suicide point to Oregon to show that there have been no problems or abuses in the  years since its law went into effect.  Contrasting this rhetoric with the reality is crucial.
More on Oregon

“NDY Urges AMA to Affirm Longstanding Opposition to Legalizing Assisted Suicide”
(Not Dead Yet — February 15, 2017)
One of the most frequently repeated claims by proponents of assisted suicide laws is that there is “no evidence or data” to support any claim that these laws are subject to abuse…” These claims are demonstrably false.
More on Disability Perspective
More on Oregon

“Do patients pay when they leave against medical advice?”
Patients who are leaving the hospital against medical advice are often told by hospital staff that doing so will leave them liable for the entire bill because insurance will not pay if they leave against medical advice.
As described in a study, that is a myth, a medical urban legend, and one which is widespread.

Previously Featured Articles
Also see site map to access specific topics which include previously featured articles.

Have you heard about VSED?  
It stands for voluntarily stopping eating and drinking. VSED is being promoted by assisted-suicide activists who are also working to force health care providers to participate in it.  Important Questions & Answers about VSED

From the bookshelf…
In 1991, Ann Humphry, the co-founder of the Hemlock Society (now called Compassion and Choices) committed suicide. Her death made headlines worldwide.

Prior to her death, Ann contacted Rita Marker, a staunch euthanasia opponent. Over time, the two became close friends, and Ann asked Rita to make public secrets about the right-to-die movement — secrets that had weighed heavily on Ann.

Two years after Ann’s tragic death, the book, Deadly Compassion: The Death of Ann Humphry and the Truth About Euthanasia was published. It recounts Ann’s personal story, the founding of the Hemlock Society, and activities of euthanasia and doctor-prescribed suicide advocates. Thousands of copies of the book were sold in the United States, England, Canada and Australia. (Read excerpts from reviews of the book.)

Now, for the first time, you can read Deadly Compassion in its entirety on line in PDF format.