Federal Panel Studies U.S. Approach to Physician-Assisted Dying

OTTAWA, Oct. 7, 2015 /CNW/ - The Expert Panel on Options for a Legislative Response to Carter v. Canada has returned from its fact-finding trip to Portland, Oregon, where it learned how assisted dying, which has been legal there for nearly 20 years, is practiced.

During their three-day visit, Dr. Harvey Max Chochinov, Chair of the Panel, Benoît Pelletier and Catherine Frazee met with nine individuals and organizations to discuss the implementation and operation of assisted dying in Oregon. Panel members engaged in discussions with the co-author of Oregon's Death with Dignity Act, as well as with experts from the medical profession and disability rights organizations. The Panel's fact-finding mission concluded with an exchange of ideas with Dr. Linda Ganzini, a prominent researcher in geriatric mental health, end-of-life care, and palliative care for the terminally ill. 

"We were impressed by the discussions we had with experts from a range of disciplines," said Dr. Harvey Max Chochinov, Chair of the External Panel on Options for a Legislative Response to Carter v Canada. "The insight they provided has given us a more thorough understanding of Oregon's Act. These consultations are of great importance to the Panel's work in developing effective options for the government to consider when developing well-crafted laws for Canadians." 

The Oregon mission was a follow up to the Panel's previous study of physician-assisted dying in three European countries – Belgium, The Netherlands, and Switzerland. Both are part of a larger program of consultation that includes a national online consultation with Canadians (www.externalpanel.ca), meetings with expert groups and individuals, and in-person consultations set to resume immediately following the federal election.

Canadians are encouraged to provide their insights to the Panel on how physician-assisted dying can be implemented in Canada at: www.externalpanel.ca/issuebook/. The deadline for receiving input from Canadians through the Panel's Issue Book has been extended until November 1, 2015.

For further information on the Panel and its work, please visit:

www.externalpanel.ca

Link to:

Federal Panel gains insight into assisted dying practices in European countries 
CTV Canada AM interview with Dr. Harvey Max ChochinovSeptember 22, 2015 
Federal Panel on Physician-Assisted Dying Begins European Study
Canadians have an opportunity to be heard on the issue of physician-assisted dying 
Reflections on my decision to Chair the Federal Panel on Physician-Assisted Dying

 

SOURCE Secretariat to the External Panel on Options for a Legislative Response to Carter v. Canada

For further information: Secretariat Communications, 613-952-9364. media@ep-ce.ca. Twitter: @externalpanel, www.externalpanel.ca

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