September 01, 2016

Issues with California's End of Life Option Act

Michael Fedalen

California’s End of Life Option Act, regarding physician-assisted suicide, went into effect on June 9, 2016. While the Act appears generally well-tailored towards accomplishing its goal of allowing terminally ill patients with six months or less of life expectancy to take control of their impending death by choosing to end their life on their own terms, there are still certain potential risks. The individual must be informed and receive information on all of his or her options before a physician may prescribe a lethal dose of medication. The Act goes further to stipulate that the individual must submit two oral requests and one written request to their primary doctor before his or her end-of-life wish can be granted, and must have their condition and the circumstances of the request confirmed by an independent physician.

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