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Governor Phil Scott has signed S.74 into law, amending Vermont’s medical-aid-in-dying statute. Advocates for the changes said this would make the medical-aid-in-dying process more accessible for terminally ill Vermonters. 

Vermont’s medical-aid-in-dying law has been in effect since 2013. It set up a multi-step process to request a life-ending prescription for any patient with a prognosis of six months or less to live.

Under the original law, the patient had to make two in-person requests to a prescribing physician, visit another consulting physician in person and submit a written request. 

After all these steps were completed, the patient had to wait an additional 48 hours to obtain a prescription. 

With S.74, patients will now be able to request the prescription using telemedicine. S.74 also got rid of the final 48-hour waiting period. 

It also adds explicit legal immunity for all licensed health care workers involved in the process, including the pharmacist who fills the prescription. 

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