Physician Asst. Suicide

Please be sure to scroll down to explore helpful resources on this page!


(PLEASE pay attention to the country these news articles come from. Not all are about US policy or laws!)

physician assisted suicide - Google News


You are welcome to look for other groups - this list may help you get started.

Support PAS
Death with Dignity
Compassion & Choices - click on "Act" tab and "state by state legislation" to get updates on pending legislation

Oppose PAS
Citizens United Resisting Euthanasia (CURE)
United States Conference of Catholic Bishops- plus this article outlines numerous reasons to oppose PAS -
International Task Force on Euthanasia and Assisted Suicide
Family Research Council

American Medical Association - response to student email about PAS:
Physician-assisted suicide occurs when a physician facilitates a patient’s death by providing the necessary means and/or information to enable the patient to perform the life-ending act (eg, the physician provides sleeping pills and information about the lethal dose, while aware that the patient may commit suicide). It is understandable, though tragic, that some patients in extreme duress--such as those suffering from a terminal, painful, debilitating illness--may come to decide that death is preferable to life. However, allowing physicians to participate in assisted suicide would cause more harm than good. Physician-assisted suicide is fundamentally incompatible with the physician’s role as healer, would be difficult or impossible to control, and would pose serious societal risks. Instead of participating in assisted suicide, physicians must aggressively respond to the needs of patients at the end of life. Patients should not be abandoned once it is determined that cure is impossible. Multidisciplinary interventions should be sought including specialty consultation, hospice care, pastoral support, family counseling, and other modalities. Patients near the end of life must continue to receive emotional support, comfort care, adequate pain control, respect for patient autonomy, and good communication. (I, IV) Issued June 1994 based on the reports "Decisions Near the End of Life," adopted June 1991, and "Physician-Assisted Suicide," adopted December 1993 (JAMA. 1992; 267: 2229-33); Updated June 1996.
Here's a list of other AMA policy statements on the subject:

Not an interest group, but raises ideas opposed to PAS:

PRO/CON - website with information about both sides of the physician assisted suicide debate -
Article about Montana becoming 3rd state to approve physician-assisted suicide
• Timeline of PAS in the US -


Gallup Poll (2007) -
Pew Research Poll (2006) -

For data chart, there are many in the Oregon Department of Health's Annual Report -
For a statistical chart or graph-


Suggested cases for you to review include (choose one):
Gonzales v. Oregon (I would recommend reading about this case)
Washington v. Glucksberg

Here is one helpful resource link (type in case name in search box). The library has a number of excellent resources. You may use other online sources as well (with the exception of wikipedia).


Learning about a Relevant Law -Frequently asked questions here. State of Oregon's Death with Dignity Act (full text here).

This is a federalism issue, with the federal government saying that the Federal Controlled Substances Act should take priority:|EJ3011270102&mode=view

History of legislation in Maine and Willamette University resource - scroll to bottom of page 1 for information about attempt to pass legislation similar to Death with Dignity Act in Maine.

Links for elections results on Washington state's law - Seattle Times


The Oregon Death with Dignity Act requires the Oregon Department of Human Services to collect information about the patients and physicians who participate in the Act, and publish an annual statistical report.
Link to some frequently asked questions: Oregon Department of Human Services