Californians Get the Right to Die

Californians Get the Right to Die

On October 4, California Governor, Jerry Brown signed the End of Life Option Act legislation (SB-128), that will allow terminally ill California residents to have the option of legally ending their lives by prescription medication. According to CNN, Governor Brown decided on an answer based on his own reflection “on what I would want in the face of my own death.” Though this passed last year, it will go into effect on June 9th as California becomlethales the 5th state to give its citizens the right to die.

While this law only grants terminally ill state residents the “right to die,” there are more restrictions and regulations within the law. In fact, the patiencaliforniat must be at least 18 years old, able to identify state residency, and have a disease that will lead to death within 6 months. Requirements also state that two doctors must approve the request, and determine a patient’s capability to decide to die. However, a doctor is not necessary at the time of death. The act also does not permit people to die based on age or disability, or for accidents or illnesses, making it more difficult to die than some might think.

Like many new laws, this one proves to be no different, there are those who do not support it.  According to Trisha Tory, author of Cons- Arguments Against Death with Dignity and Right to Die, some cons to this law include doctors making unethical decisions,  elimination of possible recovery, goes against some religions,  elderly do not have the mental capacity to make the choice, and it will leave disadvantaged people at a socio-economic scale as they will be more likely to choose an early death.

For one who plans to take advantage of this law, they can expect for their families to receive their full life insurance policy, as the death certificate will declare the death a natural one or underlying illness. The drug that will be used is secobarbital, and will cost between $3,000-$5000. While Medicare will not cover this as it is federally funded, Medi-Cal will as the program is funded by the state.

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