Today’s Topics: Feb.23, 2021

1. MAID action in Minnesota 
2. Attempt to rescind MAID in Montana 
3. MAID in Connecticut 
4. Healthcare and Catholic hospital systems
5. MAID in Washington State
6. Follow MAID progress in New Mexico 
7. “Wrongful Life” 
8. AID bill stalls in Canada 
9. Dying “naturally” 
10. Euthanasia exception in Peru 

Message: 1

Medical-Aid-in-Dying Bill Reintroduced at MN Capitol
Public News Service – MN
By Mike Moen, Feb. 23, 2021

“Supporters point to changes in public support as they push to provide
the option of a peaceful death for those who request one.

“A legislative proposal introduced this week would allow an adult,
given less than six months to live, the opportunity to request and
self-administer life-ending medication.

“Lenore Kaibel, an advocate for medical aid in dying from Minneapolis,
said she wishes Minnesota law had that option when her husband, who
had been suffering from ALS, died in 2019, three years after his

“(Sen. Chris) Eaton acknowledged it might be hard to get a hearing
this session in the Republican-controlled Senate.

“She added those who would make that decision have already expressed
opposition, but she hopes the DFL-controlled House will at least
debate that matter to keep the conversation going…”

Read more at:

Also, The Good Death Society Blog, Feb. 28, 2021:

Message: 2

Montana bill seeks to charge doctors assisting in suicides
Associated Press/Report for America
For Great Falls Tribune
Iris Samuels, Feb. 26, 2021

“The Montana Senate Judiciary Committee voted Friday to advance a bill
that would make it illegal for doctors to help terminal patients take
their own life.

“The measure would open doctors up to possible homicide charges if
they prescribe a lethal dose of medication at the request of their

“A 2009 state Supreme Court decision protects doctors from prosecution
for the practice, though it is not explicitly allowed in state law…”

Read more at:

See also:

Message: 3

Connecticut Lawmakers Consider Aid in Dying Legislation
NBC Connecticut
By Jennifer Joas, Feb. 26, 2021

“Connecticut state legislators are considering a bill that would allow
terminally ill patients to request help from a doctor to end their
life. The public health committee held a public hearing on Friday.

“Lawmakers listened to more than 100 people testify. But this isn’t
the first time this topic has come before them. This is at least the
eighth time an aid-in-dying bill has been discussed and it has never
made it out of committee, according to Representative Jonathan
Steinberg, who represents Westport. But Steinberg is hopeful this bill
will progress…

“The Connecticut Catholic Public Affairs Conference, representing
catholic bishops in Connecticut, released a statement expressing
concern that “people may have their lives taken without their consent”
and the bill would “indirectly authorize the use of drug cocktails
that have not been approved by the FDA” and could lead to patients
being “test subjects” and suffering.

Read more at:

Message: 4

Column: UC faces more pressure to shun healthcare deals with Catholic
hospitals, as it should
Los Angeles Times
By Michael Hiltzik (Business Columnist), Feb. 21, 2021

“The heat is being turned up on the University of California to start
dropping partnerships with hospital chains that place religious
restrictions on healthcare.

“It’s about time. The issue of UC’s complicity with religious
limitations on women’s reproductive healthcare, services for LGBTQ
patients and end-of-life care has been simmering for nearly two years,
or since UC San Francisco proposed expanding its affiliation with the
Catholic hospital chain Dignity Health in 2019.

“Two recent developments signal that the time for dithering may be
coming to an end. Last month, UC faculty members posted an open letter
to university President Michael V. Drake, urging him to take a stand
against affiliation agreements with institutions that restrict crucial
health services for women and LGBTQ patients. The letter has attracted
the signatures of some 2,500 UC faculty, students, alumni and staff.

“And on Feb. 10, state Sen. Scott Wiener (D-San Francisco) introduced
a bill barring UC from entering affiliations with entities that place
‘nonclinical’ limitations on healthcare. In practice, that mostly
means religious restrictions, though it also could cover limitations
on services such as abortion imposed for political reasons or at the
demand of community protesters or donors…

“The time is long past since the University of California should have
taken a firm stand against healthcare practices based on ideology
rather than science. Sectarian healthcare organizations have been
moving their line forward, and UC is an ideal institution to lead a

“If it takes legislation, so be it…”

Read more at:

Message: 5

Washington State House Passes More Accessible MAID Bill
Medical Futility Blog
By Thaddeus Pope, Feb. 27, 2021

“Medical aid in dying has been legal in Washington State since 2008.
But following similar moves in Hawaii, Oregon, New Mexico and other
states; Washington is considering amendments to its MAID law that
would improve accessibility…”

Read more at:

Message: 6

MAID advances in New Mexico

New Mexico End-of-Life Options Coalition tracks progress here:

Message: 7

Filing Suit for ‘Wrongful Life’
The New York Times
By Paula Span, Jan. 22, 2021

“Lawsuits charging negligence or malpractice by hospitals and doctors
typically claim that they have failed to save patients’ lives. More
recently, though, some families have sued if providers failed to heed
patients’ documented wishes and prevented death from occurring.

“‘In the past, people have said, ‘How have we harmed you if we kept
you alive?'” said Thaddeus Pope, a professor at the Mitchell Hamline
School of Law in St. Paul, Minn., who follows end-of-life legal cases.
“Now, courts have said this is a compensable injury…

“In Montana, a jury delivered what is believed to be the first verdict
in a wrongful life case, awarding $209,000 in medical costs and
$200,000 for ‘mental and physical pain and suffering’ to the estate of
Rodney Knoepfle in 2019…”

Read more at:

Message: 8

Feds get another month to reform assisted-dying law as bill stalls in
the Commons
The Canadian Press
By Joan Bryden, Feb. 25, 2021

“The federal government was granted one more month today to expand
access to medical assistance in dying even as its efforts to do so
stalled in the House of Commons.

“Quebec Superior Court Justice Martin Sheehan agreed to give the
government a fourth extension — until March 26 — to bring the law
into compliance with a 2019 court ruling…”

Read more at:

ee also:
Dying with Dignity Canada, Bill C-7: Myths and Facts


Message: 9

When the sweet release of death is kindness itself (Ireland)
By Fiona O’Connell, Feb. 28, 2021

“…it’s almost two years to the day since I last wrote about my
mother, who is dying from dementia.

“She is still dying 730 days later….

“What shall we write in her obituary? Shall we rightly acknowledge a
long illness bravely borne? But also tell the truth about the
protracted pain and trauma inflicted on this precious human being by
modern-day Pharisees, who insist she die ‘naturally’ – whatever that
means in an age when our lives are most unnaturally shaped by modern
medicine and technology…”

Read more at:

Message: 10

Peruvian justice makes exception and authorizes euthanasia to psychologist
Feb. 26, 2021

“Peru authorized for the first time to respect the decision of a
psychologist to end her life when she deems it convenient and ordered
the medical authorities to elaborate a protocol for the fulfillment of
her wish.

“Judge Jorge Ramirez, of the Superior Court of Lima, said in his
ruling that the professional who helps Ana Estrada, 43, to die will
not be punished with three years in prison, as established by law. The
authorization does not open the possibility of more euthanasias but
will only be applicable to Estrada’s case…”

Read more at: