Status of Medical Aid in Dying

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. Patient Choices Vermont leads Vermont-based efforts to implement the law. The law was further improved in 2022.

On Tuesday, May 2, 2023, Vermont Governor Phil Scott signed H. 190, removing the residency requirement from the state’s medical aid-in-dying law. This signing is the culmination of over a year of hard work by our partners at Patient Choices Vermont and our legal team.

Patient Choices Vermont is a 501c3 organization that educates Vermonters on medical aid in dying and patient choice.

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Latest Vermont News

Advocates Praise Vermont Legislature and Governor for Removing Residency Requirement From State’s Medical Aid-in-Dying Law
April 12, 2024

Advocates for improving end-of-life care options for terminally ill adults praised the Vermont Legislature and Gov. Phil Scott (R-Vt.) for becoming the first state to remove the residency requirement from its medical aid-in-dying law. The signing of the bill, H.190, into law means that people who reside in other states can seek medical aid in dying in…

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Paciente de CT con Cáncer, Médico de VT con Pacientes en NY Presentan Demanda que Impugna Mandato de Residencia para Tener Acceso a Ley de Ayuda Médica para Morir de VT
August 29, 2022

Compassion & Choices presentó el jueves una demanda federal en nombre de una mujer de Connecticut con una enfermedad terminal y un médico de Vermont con pacientes en Nueva York, afirmando que el requisito de residencia para tener acceso a la ley de ayuda médica para morir de Vermont, viola la garantía de igualdad de…

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CT Cancer Patient, VT Doctor with NY Patients File Lawsuit Challenging Residency Mandate in VT Medical Aid-in-Dying Law
August 5, 2022

Compassion & Choices filed a federal lawsuit Thursday on behalf of a terminally ill Connecticut woman and Vermont physician with New York patients asserting that the residency requirement in Vermont’s medical aid-in-dying law violates the U.S. Constitution’s guarantee of equal treatment. The lawsuit asks the court to prohibit officials from enforcing this unconstitutional provision of…

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Vermont Legislature and Governor Scott enact Senate Bill 74
April 27, 2022

Governor Scott today signed Vermont Senate Bill 74. Patient Choices Vermont and Compassion & Choices extend gratitude to the Vermont Legislature and Governor Scott for enactment of this bill which updates and improves the state’s Patient Choice at End of Life Law, Act 39.  The bill passed with strong bi-partisan support. Act 39, adopted in May…

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VT Digger: Walkerman & Callinan: Empowering patients at the end of life — S.74
March 30, 2022

Read the article on This commentary is by Betsy Walkerman of Underhill, president of Patient Choices Vermont, and Kim Callinan, CEO of Oregon-based Compassion and Choices. In January, Willem Jewett, former majority leader of the Vermont House, contacted Patient Choices Vermont because he wanted to express his strong convictions about the importance of passing Senate…

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August 23, 2017

Compassion & Choices and Patient Choices Vermont today filed a motion to strike from the court record the state’s Consent Agreement with physician plaintiffs in a dismissed federal lawsuit seeking to limit information provided to patients under Vermont law. The case sought to weaken the physicians’ duty to inform patients about all of their end-of-life care…

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Groups Praise Dismissal of Lawsuit to Undermine Vermont Patient End-of-Life Law
April 6, 2017

Compassion & Choices and Patient Choices Vermont praised a federal judge’s ruling to dismiss a lawsuit brought by religious groups seeking to undermine Vermont’s Patient Choice at End of Life Act (a/k/a Act 39).  The law gives mentally capable, terminally ill adult residents of Vermont the option to get a doctor’s prescription for medication that…

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