Give me liberty and death: Assisted suicide in Oregon

A year after the Death with Dignity Act

A 43-year-old Oregon man is progressively paralyzed by the advance of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). Cared for by a hospice and his family in his travel trailer, the man requests a lethal dose of medication so that he can end his life. A physician, acting under the state's Death with Dignity law, prescribes a sufficient supply of barbiturates. The man uses a straw to mix the barbiturates with a chocolate nutrition drink. When his paralysis makes it difficult for him to swallow the mixture, a brother-in-law helps the man to die, though the brother-in-law refuses to talk about how he did it (the Oregonian, March 11, 1999).

 

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