What Is Medical Aid in Dying?

Medical aid in dying allows terminally ill adults to request and receive a prescription for medication that they may choose to take to bring about a peaceful death. To qualify, one must be mentally capable, able to self-ingest the medication and have a prognosis of six months or less to live. Eight jurisdictions currently authorize medical aid in dying: California, Colorado, Montana, Oregon, Vermont, Washington state, Hawai‘i and Washington, D.C. Things to consider about this option:

  • For some people, simply having the prescription brings comfort whether or not they use it.
  • This option can be used at home.

Resources:

This video on medical aid in dying provides information on medical aid in dying for people with terminal illness.

Medical Aid-in-Dying Tracking Sheet a C&C tool to help individual’s track their medical aid in dying process.

Medical Aid-in-Dying Factsheet

All available Compassion & Choices resources can be searched and viewed at the main Resources page.

State Specific Information Packets

California

Colorado

Hawai‘i

Washington, D.C. 

Montana

Oregon

Vermont

Washington

State Resources

California – The California Department of Public Health’s page on the End of Life Option Act.

Oregon – The Oregon Health Authority page on Death with Dignity.                 

Vermont – The Vermont Department of Health page on the Patient Choice and Control at the End of Life act.

Colorado – The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment page on the End-of-Life Option Act.

Hawai‘i – The Hawai‘i Department of Health page on the Our Care, Our Choice Act.

Washington, D.C. – The D.C. Health page on the Death with Dignity Act

Compassion & Choices’ End-of-Life Consultation program (EOLC) provides information on the full range of options at the end of life. EOLC, and representatives of EOLC, do not provide medical or legal advice. We simply inform individuals of the available options.