Dying with Dignity

DyingwithDignityThe Vermont House of Representatives approved a bill that allows a physician to administer a lethal dose of medication to a terminally ill patient that meets specific criteria and who has gone through the safeguard procedures.  The bill was signed into law by Governor Peter Shumlin.  Vermont has become the fourth state to allow physician-assisted suicide, which is already permitted in Washington, Oregon, and Montana.

New Hampshire does not permit physicians to prescribe lethal doses of medication.  However, there are many less controversial ways to prepare should the worst happen and you become terminally ill.  The best step you can take now is to become proactive.  Arrange a meeting with an estate attorney who can help you prepare an Advance Directive.  An Advance Directive in New Hampshire will help protect your right to decide whether you want to request or refuse medical treatment in certain situations.  It also allows you to name an agent to make decisions about your health care if you are unable to do so.  It is important that you discuss your beliefs and concerns with the person you name as your agent so that person may carry out your wishes.

We all hope to stay healthy and live long lives, but arranging for the possibility that things won’t go as smoothly as planned can provide you with a sense of relief in knowing you are prepared.

Author: Davi M. Peters, Esq.

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