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Sunday, January 24, 2016

Opponents fail to derail the state's right-to-die measure, but they may yet try again in court

By The Times Editorial Board
The Los Angeles Times
Originally posted January 7, 2016

Here is an excerpt:

The group behind the referendum attempt, known as Seniors Against Suicide, says it is now contemplating a lawsuit to stop the law's implementation. The law is set to go into effect 90 days after the state Legislature concludes the still-open special session on healthcare.

We respect the law's opponents, including the Roman Catholic Church and some disability-rights advocates; they waged a passionate battle — both moral and practical — against it. But we don't share their fears. There is no evidence that a law this narrow would lead uncaring health insurers or family members to coerce sick patients to kill themselves in order to save on medical costs.

To the contrary, two decades of experience with Oregon's landmark Death with Dignity Act suggests that it will be used sparingly. In the first 17 years, just 1,327 people in Oregon requested a life-ending prescription from a doctor. More than a third of them then chose not to use the prescription.

The article is here.