California Gov. Brown Signs Aid-in-Dying Bill into Law

California Gov. Jerry Brown signed landmark legislation Monday, allowing terminally ill patients to obtain lethal medication to end their lives. In a deeply personal statement, Brown wrote that he read opposition materials carefully, but in the end was left to reflect on what he would want in the face of his own death. “I do not know what I would do if I were dying in prolonged and excruciating pain,” the former Jesuit seminarian wrote. “I am certain, however, that it would be a comfort to be able to consider the options afforded by this bill. And I wouldn’t deny that right to others.” Brown, who is a Democrat, had been silent on the issue before Monday’s signing statement. If he had not signed the bill, it would have become law later this week. The new law requires two different doctors to determine that a patient has six months or less to live before prescribing the drugs. The patient must voluntarily submit two oral requests at least 15 days apart, as well as a written request to the attending physician. And patients must be physically able to swallow the medication themselves, have the mental capacity to make medical decisions.

Source/more: Kaiser Health News


David Wingate is an elder law attorney at the Elder Law Office of David Wingate, LLC. The elder law office services clients with powers of attorneys, living wills, Wills, Trusts, Medicaid and asset protection. The Elder Law office has locations in Frederick and Montgomery Counties, Maryland.

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