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Death with Dignity Ballot Question Certified by Attorney General

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Ian David Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-11-11 07:00 PM
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Death with Dignity Ballot Question Certified by Attorney General
BOSTON The proposed Death with Dignity Act initiative petition moved one step closer to the Massachusetts ballot today with the Attorney Generals certification that the question meets all requirements to be considered by the voters in 2012. Dignity 2012, a Massachusetts coalition of supporters of the proposal, announced they will immediately begin collecting signatures of eligible voters across the state.

The Death with Dignity Act gives terminally ill patients greater control and peace of mind during their final days with family and loved ones, said Norma Shapiro, of Concord, one of the original petitioners for the Death with Dignity Act. It affirms our right as individuals to make decisions about our own end-of-life care.

The Death with Dignity Act would allow terminally ill adults with six months or less to live to receive and self-administer a prescription for life-ending medication. The law contains comprehensive and strict safeguards to protect patients and physicians. Doctors must verify the mental competence of the patient and the voluntary nature of the request, and there is a 15-day waiting period between the request and the writing of the prescription. The patient has the right to change his or her mind at any time.

The Massachusetts Death with Dignity Act would create a legally sanctioned process for dying patients whose suffering cannot be adequately controlled to receive a prescription from a licensed physician to bring about a peaceful and dignified death, said Marcia Angell, MD, former Editor-in-Chief of the New England Journal of Medicine, and an original petitioners for the ballot initiative. As a physician who has studied this issue over many years, I believe the people of Massachusetts are ready to consider giving suffering patients this option.


Key Facts About the Massachusetts Death with Dignity Act
The Massachusetts Death with Dignity Act:

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