A Coalition of Delaware Citizens working to stop the Legalization of Assisted Suicide and Promote a Culture of Life.
THE TRUTH ABOUT ASSISTED SUICIDE:
IT’S NOT AS DIGNIFIED AS IT SEEMS
Assisted Suicide (PAS) — currently legal in only six states and the District of Columbia — has been branded as a compassionate way for terminally ill patients to choose when and how they die. The reality is, the effects of PAS on patients and families aren’t compassionate or dignified at all.
LAWMAKERS WIDELY REJECT IT
Over the past two years, twenty-nine state legislatures have considered PAS legislation. Only ONE passed the bill into law.
LETHAL ADDICTIVE DRUGS GO UNUSED
If a patient fills the lethal prescription — typically 100 pills — but decides against taking it, there are no safeguards to ensure the drugs stay out of the hands of children and prescription drug dealers. In Oregon, 468 people have filled their prescription and decided not to end their lives, leaving tens of thousands of highly addictive barbiturates unaccounted for. 1, 2
TAXPAYERS FOOT THE BILL
Taxpayers in Oregon and California pay for the lethal drugs and doctor visits. California’s Medicaid program has budgeted $2.3 million taxpayer dollars for the first fiscal year PAS is legal. President Bill Clinton prohibited using federal funds to subsidize PAS, leaving states to foot the bill. 3
IT AFFECTS OVERALL SUICIDE RATES
Since passing a PAS law in 1997, Oregon has seen a 49.3% increase in non-assisted suicides. PAS laws make suicide socially acceptable. As a result, Oregon’s overall suicide rate is 41% higher than the national rate. Just reading about PAS can serve as a trigger for those contemplating suicide. 4
MENTAL HEALTH CONDITIONS ARE IGNORED
Only 4% of patients who died from PAS in Washington state were referred for a mental health evaluation. Suicidal patients aren’t given resources they deserve, like being screened for depression by a mental health care provider. 5
These lethal drugs are often administered by physicians who barely know their patients. More than half of patients who died from the lethal drug in Washington state only knew their prescribing physician for six months or less. 6
1 Washington State Department of Health, Death with Dignity Act Frequently Asked Questions. 2 www.deathwithdignity.org/faqs. 3 The American Presidency Project, “Statement on Signing the Assisted Suicide Funding Restriction Act of 1997”. 4 European Commission, Press Release, 12/20/2011. 5 www.medscape.com/viewarticle/742070_3. 6 Washington State Department of Health, Death with Dignity Act Report 2015, pg. 11.
Source: Patients Rights Action Fund A Las Vegas doctor says that he remembers the account described in an anti-assisted-suicide advertisement of an insurer denying life-saving treatment to a patient, while pushing doctors to move forward with a prescription of lethal...
Source: Patients Rights Action Fund A Massachusetts judge ruled that two doctors may move forward with a lawsuit seeking an order that the state’s murder and manslaughter laws do not apply to physicians who offer lethal medications to terminally ill patients. Superior...
Source: Patients Rights Action Fund Dr. Rebecca Thoman, a representative of Compassion & Choices and not a Massachusetts resident, recently responded to my column in which I urged rejection of doctor-prescribed suicide. Her column helped make my point that those...
Source: Patients Rights Action Fund New York’s highest court will hear arguments Tuesday in a lawsuit that seeks to effectively undo the state’s statute against physician-assisted suicide. An advocacy group, “End of Life Choice New York,” along with some terminally...
Source: Patients Rights Action Fund On Tuesday, the Court of Appeals will hear Myers v. Schneiderman, a renewed attempt to legalize physician-assisted suicide in New York. The plaintiffs are three patients, two of whom have since died, several physicians and End of...
Source: Patients Rights Action Fund House lawmakers rejected a bill on Tuesday that would have allowed doctors to prescribe fatal doses of medication to terminally ill patients who want to end their own lives. The bipartisan 85-61 vote against the bill followed...