On May 20, 2013, Act 39, Vermont Patient Choice and Control at the End of Life Act went into effect, when Governor Shumlin signed it into law. The law is currently in effect giving terminally ill, mentally capable Vermont residents with six months or less to live the option to request a prescription medication to end unbearable suffering. Patient Choices Vermont leads Vermont-based efforts to implement the law.
In 2022, the law was improved to make three important changes.
Removed the requirement that medication requests and an examination be done in the physical presence of a physician.
Remove the requirement that the physician must have waited at least 48 hours after the occurrence of certain required events before writing the prescription.
Extend immunities to any person who acts in good faith compliance with the provisions of the law.
Tools and Resources
For Patients Access the Vermont Advance Directive
End-of-Life Planning Use our step-by-step guide to chart your journey.
Los recursos en Español Los recursos en Español.
COVID-19 Toolkit Get answers to your questions about COVID-19 and end of life care.
Resources for Providers Find resources tailored to the needs of healthcare providers.