Civil Rights for Seniors
|Posted on September 6, 2015 at 5:35 PM|
In Nevada we saw the right to die bill not make it out of committee, but the legislature allowed a right to try bill pass. Guardianships in Nevada under study after finalncial exploitation and alledged mental and physical abuse. A Special Commission has been established and is meeting monthly. The next meeting will be September 16, at the Reno Airport. Vetarans are being displaced and housing is being denied.Compassion and Choice will soon be in Nevada to help educate seniors and the right to die with dignity. The following presents some of the discussion regarding death with dignity and then we will present a discussion on adult guardianship.
In general death with dignity allows a terminal ill person who is competent to obtain a prescription that will be self administered to end their life. the key aspects ar that the person must be competent, terminal ill, with 6 months to live. There are an over abundant safegurads in the laws to be sure the person is making the decision with after ample consultation with two doctors and after making the request twice with one beiing in writing. One writing is witness. Oppendents are blanking the airways with false and misleading information. this first article will provide a informal legal basis in support of the bill.
The core elements of Death with Dignity laws should include;
• Using terminal illness not disease,
• Using competent not capable,
• Permitting one not multiple oral and written requests for a prescription,
• Permitting an exception to 18 years old and,
• Permitting one doctor not “two doctors and two lay witnesses” to confirm competency.
Nevada needs this legislation more than other states because of our growing senior population and because we do not have an expressed right of privacy in our Constitution.
Today, in Nevada defending a law suit involving acts assisting death would have to be based on the Liberty interest found in Article 1, section 8 of the Constitution of the State of Nevada. Those who would need protection from liability would now have to seek relief from our Supreme Court and hope the current Court would be as pragmatic as the Court in 1990 which held a competent person had a constitutional privacy right to discontinue further medical treatment. McKay v. Bergstedt, 106 Nev. 808, 801 P.2d 617 ((1990).
Oregon, Vermont, and Washington have statutes and the Supreme courts of Montana and New Mexico now permit end of life options. The Canadian Supreme Court has also authorized death with dignity decisions. California “End of Life Option ACT” has been reintroduced and is moving for a full vote soon.
A Death with Dignity law should allow a person who understands the nature and consequences of his/her decision and who has a terminal illness to end his/her life with dignity. The definition of terminal illness should not be restricted to a definitive 6 month period within which death must occur.
The law should allow a person who is not competent to have the right to die with dignity with the assistance of a parent, guardian, person with a power of attorney or court order.
There is precedent for this in Attorney General Opinion 97-08. “Children; Child Abuse and Neglect; Health; Courts; Juveniles”. The Attorney General examined whether a court upon physician’s recommendation could order placement of a “Do Not Resuscitate” order on the chart of a terminally ill “ward” of the state when the minor is in custody of the ward’s treating physician. The AG answered in the affirmative and also expressed that the Division of Child and Family Services would avoid liability.