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Nurse Practitioner Association of the District of Columbia

DC Council to Mark Up Death With Dignity Bill on 10/5/2016

Posted 6 months ago by Laura Worby

The DC City Council's Committee on Health will mark up the proposed Death With Dignity Act of 2015 on Wednesday 10/5/2016.  The bill allows physicians (but not NPs) to prescribe medications for terminally ill patients who wish to die in a humane and dignified manner.  NPADC did not take a formal position on the proposed legislation.  However, we are including information here in case DC resident NPs wish to contact their DC Councilmembers about this legislation, particularly with regard to adding provider-inclusive language.  

BILL SUMMARY - As introduced, this bill establishes procedures and safeguards regarding the request for and dispensation of covered medications to qualified patients who are terminally ill and wish to die in a humane and dignified manner. The bill establishes dispensation and reporting requirements for physicians and the Department of Health. The legislation also defines its effect on contracts, wills, insurance and annuity policies and requires that they not be conditioned upon or affected by the making or rescinding of a request for medication or by a patient ingesting covered medication. It establishes terms for immunity from criminal and civil liabilities, establishes penalties and provides an opt-out provision for health care providers. It also provides for claims by the government for costs incurred from a patient terminating his or her life pursuant to the legislation in a public place.

Proposed Legislation: http://lims.dccouncil.us/Download/33261/B21-0038-Introduction.pdf

Washington Post Editorial: https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/make-the-district-a-place-to-die-with-dignity/2016/10/01/e7cca922-84e5-11e6-92c2-14b64f3d453f_story.html?utm_term=.3d8b58931ff3

Committee on Health and Human Services Members and contact info: http://dccouncil.us/committees/committe-on-health-and-human-services