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“Dying in the Americas 2018” conference

Visit www.finalexitnetwork.org for more information.

Explore the future of dying in the Americas: Where we are today and help define a path to the future.
March 21-25, 2018 Las Vegas/Henderson, NV
Hilton Lake Las Vegas Resort & Spa located on Lake Las Vegas

Join us to re-imagine the dying experience in America. Keynote Speakers:

– *Dr. Zubin Damania* – health care pioneer in new ways of considering healthcare delivery and conversations. ZdoggMD* (*
http://zdoggmd.com/aint-the-way-to-die/)
– *Shanaaz Gokool *- CEO, Dying with Dignity Canada, a compelling
speaker and leading activist in changing Canadian laws
– *Dr. Stefanie Green, Victoria, Canada *- a pioneer physician in Canada who has changed her practice from OB-GYN to MAiD, Medical Aid in Dying.

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Oregon’s Death With Dignity Act: Two Decades of Data

By Tara Haelle

Oregon’s Death With Dignity Act (DWDA), passed through a voter-approved ballot initiative in 1997, lays out strict requirements for patients interested in requesting a prescription from their physician that would enable the patient to end to his or her life. In the 20 years since its passage, 0.2% of deaths in Oregon resulted from DWDA prescriptions but the number is increasing, researchers report in an article published online today in Annals of Internal Medicine.

To obtain a DWDA prescription, patients must be adults of sound mind, have Oregon residency status, and have a terminal illness diagnosis. In addition, two physicians must confirm the patient’s diagnosis and prognosis, the patient must be offered hospice care, and the patient must make one witnessed written request and two oral requests at least 15 days apart.

Among the 1857 Oregon residents who received DWDA prescriptions between 1998 and June 2017, 64% died from taking the prescribed drugs. These deaths represented a rate of 19 per 10,000 total deaths out of the 614,972 all-cause deaths of Oregon adults during that period.

Cancer was the diagnosis for 77% of DWDA patients, 8% had amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, 5% had chronic respiratory disease, and 2% had heart disease. Among adults with these same diagnoses who did not elect DWDA prescriptions, the rate of death was 54.6 per 10,000 deaths.

DWDA death rates showed relative increases of 14% each year from 1998 to 2013 and 36% annually from 2013 to 2015. Although DWDA deaths appeared to level off in 2016, it’s unclear Continue Reading »

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NEW book, the memoir of Derek Humphry ‘Good Life, Good Death’ in hardback is now available at
http://www.finalexit.org/ergo-store/books-c-65/
Memoir is autographed. Could also be inscribed to you by request. New low price $20+$6 -USA

ERGO Bookstore at www.finalexit.org/ergo-store

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DIGNITAS (Switzerland) newsletter for August 2017

According to the Swiss government’s deaths statistics, a mere 1.2 % of all deaths registered in 2014 were accompanied suicides.

DIGNITAS has calculated – based on the data published by the Swiss self-determination organizations – that also in the two subsequent years, the number of assisted suicides stayed below 1.5 %. The Swiss system of freedom of choice and self-responsibility in end-of-life questions has proved sensible for 35 years now.

http://dignitas.ch/images/stories/pdf/join.pdf

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Letter to the Editor of the Register-Guard, Eugene, Oregon, 21 August 2017:

Death With Dignity law falls short

I read with interest about the new organization in Oregon dealing with death with dignity (guest viewpoint, Aug. 16).

The Oregon Death With Dignity law is good, but can be more compassionate. It could be expanded to be more inclusive of people who are suffering needlessly. There are many people lying in bed with miserable qualities of life who wish there was a third option to terminate their suffering.

I recently started a drive to get a petition going to change the Oregon law. I recently was in contact with Derek Humphry, author of “Final Exit.” He was also an original driver behind our first law. He originally wanted it expanded to begin with, but had to compromise.

I’ve been in contact with the national Death With Dignity groups and they didn’t want to talk to me. Humphry explained that Oregon’s law is the model for the rest of the nation. Proponents are afraid that if we try to change it, that’ll proved it’s a flawed law and will hurt their efforts.

My reply is yes, we have a good law, but it needs to be more compassionate. Oregon is a compassionate state; that’s already proven. Why stick the other states with the original restrictive law? Help us fix our law and be a better example.

—Bruce Yelle, Florence, Oregon

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The blog of the Oxford University Press August 22, 2017, printed this article about free speech and the right-to-die movement:

Is advocating suicide a crime under the First Amendment?
Rational Suicide, Irrational Laws: Examining Current Approaches to Suicide in Policy and Law

By Susan Stefan
Two different cases raising similar issues about advocating suicide may shape US policy for years to come. In Massachusetts, Michelle Carter was sentenced to two and a half years in prison for urging her friend Conrad Roy not to abandon his plan to kill himself by inhaling carbon monoxide: “Get back in that car!” she texted, and he did. The Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court has already ruled that prosecuting her for involuntary manslaughter was permissible, even though she was not on the scene. The Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court was careful to insist that its holding did not criminalize assisting the suicide of a person with a terminal illness:

It is important to articulate what this case is not about. It is not about a person seeking to ameliorate the anguish of someone coping with a terminal illness and questioning the value of life. Nor is it about a person offering support, comfort and even assistance to a mature adult who, confronted with such circumstances, has decided to end his or her life.

And now the case of Final Exit v. Minnesota is before the Supreme Court, with Final Exit asking the Supreme Court to take the case and overturn its conviction for assisting the suicide of Doreen Dunn on First Amendment grounds. Notably, no individual was convicted in that case: the medical director was given use immunity to testify against the organization, which was found guilty of the crime, and was fined $30,000.

Final Exit Network was convicted Continue Reading »

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Attorney Robert Rivas posted in Final Exit Network web page:

“The Scotusblog (“Scotus” = Supreme Court of the United States), a blog by experts in the Scotus, has selected Final Exit Network’s Petition for a Writ of Certiorari as its featured “Petition of the Day” for July 27, 2017. Scotusblog says its “Petition of the Day” features petitions that are likely to appear on its “Petitions to Watch” list when they are scheduled for consideration by the Justices.

“Petitions of the day” are described as those that are “identified as raising one or more questions that have a reasonable chance of being granted in an appropriate case.” Fingers crossed. This is the appeal on First Amendment grounds from the Minnesota conviction.

http://www.scotusblog.com/2017/07/petition-of-the-day-1192/Petition of the day – SCOTUSblog”

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Inaugural 2017 NuTech Prize

It is with great pleasure that Exit International announces the establishment of a prize to be awarded to the most innovative use of technology to improve the means of providing a peaceful, elective and autonomous (DIY) death.

The US$5000 prize will be awarded at the NuTech 2017 gathering in Toronto on 28th October 2017.
There is no entry fee required, and all submitted ideas will be considered for the award.

To submit a proposal (idea, draft, concept, or prototype) you are invited to contact NuTech at nutech@protonmail.com with a short (<500 word) summary of your proposal and (if applicable) related images.

A person submitting a proposal is welcome to attend the Toronto meeting, either in person or by video link, to speak about their idea.
Proposals will be considered by a specially convened judging panel consisting of:

Derek Humphry
Derek has had a lifetime of experience in the right to die movement, and authored the pioneering self-help manual Final Exit in 1991. Derek was instrumental in the establishment of the NuTech movement.

Tom Curran
Tom lives in Ireland and is the European coordinator of Exit International. He came to international prominence when, together with his partner, MS sufferer Marie Fleming, took a case for access to legal assistance to die to the Irish Supreme and High Courts.

Miriam de Bontridder
Miriam is an Appeals Court judge in NL with a long history of involvement in the Dutch right to die movement. Miriam lives in Amsterdam and is a Chairperson of Stichting De Einder.

For further information about the prize, or the NuTech (Toronto) gathering, please contact NuTech nutech@protonmail.com or by phone Philip Nitschke +31 630 966 992

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Stuff.co.nz website reports 13 July 2017:
Dodgy scam site uses Kiwi pro-euthanasia protest imagery to sell bogus suicide drugs

Pro-euthanasia lobby group Exit International is warning its members off a scam website, based in the Ukraine, which is fleecing the elderly by selling the popular and costly suicide drug Nembutal, which never arrives.

Those falling for the scam are mostly elderly people, many in poor health and with little internet savvy.

They are being gouged about $1100 – the price of a 25gm dose of the drug – and are too frightened to go to the authorities to complain about buying an illegal substance.

Exit founder Philip Nitschke said about three of its members were in contact every week about the ripoff as the market for the lethal Class C controlled drug, used in assisted suicide, grows worldwide.

The Painless Path website uses a Stuff picture of supporters protesting outside the assisted suicide trial of Wellington euthanasia advocate Susan Austen.

Austen, 66, a Lower Hutt teacher, was charged in October 2016 with having twice imported pentobarbitone, more commonly known by its trade name Nembutal. In high doses, it causes death by respiratory arrest.

Nitschke was gobsmacked the site offered cheaper rates for teenagers and said the use of a news photo featuring euthanasia lobbyists in genuine protest was perfect for a scam site as it appeared credible and featured people from an older demographic.

Exit’s handbook lists a handful of legitimate sites in Mexico, Peru, Venezuela and China but Nitschke says there are nearly 100 scam sites, a number that is growing in parallel with the rising global demand for the drug as an end-of-life option.

“Luckily they don’t sell anything, just take your money. We’ll be alerting members … the steady growth in internet scams over the past decade is an indication of the growing global market in this drug ,” he said.

The handbook had been updated to list bogus sites.

Nitschke said sites like Painless Path relied on those who fell for the scam being too frightened or sick to report it to the authorities.

“This is a vulnerable group who can hardly go to authorities saying I lost money buying this illegal drug. They’d be admitting to breaking the law.”

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New memoir by Derek Humphry — on Amazon etc

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