As concerned as I am about the COVID-19 pandemic, I would like to add my voice to the letters of Dr. DePrez and Dr. Harrington from March 19 and April 21 in support of the death with dignity bill, officially titled The End of Life Options Act (H.1926).
The deadline for the vote by the Joint Committee on Public Health was May 30, but was extended a month because of the COVID crisis.
The bill would allow mentally competent, terminally ill adults with less than six months to live who are facing severe and unrelieved pain, to purchase medication prescribed by their doctor to be taken if and when they choose as a compassionate aid in dying.
Massachusetts would join nine other states and the District of Columbia which have enacted similar legislation. The Massachusetts Medical Society has dropped its long-held opposition to this issue and adopted a new position of "engaged neutrality."
As a family physician, senior citizen, mother and daughter, I would welcome legislation that would allow my patients, myself and my family choices in how we would like our lives to end.
I encourage you to contact your state legislators and urge them to support this bill, so that all people have the right to choose the path that is best for them. Please urge people you know to do the same.
Willa Kahn, M.D.