Clinical Criteria for Physician Aid in Dying

Journal of Palliative Medicine 19(3): 259-262 (2016)

Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law Research Paper No. 2015-49

11 Pages Posted: 8 Dec 2015 Last revised: 30 Dec 2016

See all articles by David Orentlicher

David Orentlicher

University of Nevada, Las Vegas, William S. Boyd School of Law

Thaddeus Mason Pope

Mitchell Hamline School of Law; Queensland University of Technology - Australian Health Law Research Center; Saint Georges University; Alden March Bioethics Institute

Ben A. Rich

University of California, Davis

Date Written: October 10, 2015

Abstract

More than 20 years ago, even before voters in Oregon had enacted the first aid in dying (AID) statute in the United States, Timothy Quill and colleagues proposed clinical criteria AID. Their proposal was carefully considered and temperate, but there were little data on the practice of AID at the time. (With AID, a physician writes a prescription for life-ending medication for a terminally ill, mentally capacitated adult.)

With the passage of time, a substantial body of data on AID has developed from the states of Oregon and Washington. For more than 17 years, physicians in Oregon have been authorized to provide a prescription for AID. Accordingly, we have updated the clinical criteria of Quill, et al., based on the many years of experience with AID. With more jurisdictions authorizing AID, it is critical that physicians can turn to reliable clinical criteria. As with any medical practice, AID must be provided in a safe and effective manner. Physicians need to know (1) how to respond to a patient’s inquiry about AID, (2) how to assess patient decision making capacity, and (3) how to address a range of other issues that may arise.

To ensure that physicians have the guidance they need, Compassion & Choices convened the Physician Aid-in-Dying Clinical Criteria Committee, in July 2012, to create clinical criteria for physicians who are willing to provide AID to patients who request it. The committee includes experts in medicine, law, bioethics, hospice, nursing, social work, and pharmacy. Using an iterative consensus process, the Committee drafted the criteria over a one-year period.

Keywords: aid-in-dying, AID, death with dignity, physician-assisted suicide, end-of-life, bioethics

JEL Classification: K32, I18

Suggested Citation

Orentlicher, David and Pope, Thaddeus Mason and Rich, Ben A., Clinical Criteria for Physician Aid in Dying (October 10, 2015). Journal of Palliative Medicine 19(3): 259-262 (2016), Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law Research Paper No. 2015-49, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2699961

David Orentlicher

University of Nevada, Las Vegas, William S. Boyd School of Law ( email )

4505 South Maryland Parkway
Box 451003
Las Vegas, NV 89154
United States

Thaddeus Mason Pope (Contact Author)

Mitchell Hamline School of Law ( email )

875 Summit Avenue
Room 320
Saint Paul, MN 55105
United States
651-695-7661 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://www.thaddeuspope.com

Queensland University of Technology - Australian Health Law Research Center ( email )

2 George Street
Brisbane, Queensland 4000
Australia

Saint Georges University ( email )

West Indies
Grenada

HOME PAGE: http://www.thaddeuspope.com

Alden March Bioethics Institute ( email )

47 New Scotland Ave
MC 153
Albany, NY 12208
United States

HOME PAGE: http://www.thaddeuspope.com

Ben A. Rich

University of California, Davis ( email )

Martin Luther King, Jr. Hall
Davis, CA CA 95616-5201
United States

HOME PAGE: http://bioethics.ucdavis.edu/brich/

Do you have a job opening that you would like to promote on SSRN?

Paper statistics

Downloads
88
Abstract Views
1,264
rank
409,339
PlumX Metrics