State legislators put spotlight on medical assistance for terminally ill

Over 50 state lawmakers support terminally ill patients right to die on their own terms

BOSTON, Mass. (WWLP) – A State Superior Court Judge heard arguments on whether terminally ill patients should have the right to request medical aid in dying. 22News found out what some legislators are doing to get this law passed through the state.

More than 50 Massachusetts lawmakers support giving terminally ill patients the right to die on their own terms. Patients with terminal illnesses, like cancer, want relief from their suffering but they’ll have to go through either the courts, the state or voters.

This issue was defeated by Massachusetts voters back in November 2012 when it failed by just 3% on the ballot. Now, legislators are bringing this issue back into the spotlight.

Stoughton State Representative Louis Kafka has re-filed a bill to allow terminally ill adults with less than 6 months to live an option to request lethal medication from their doctors. “They made choices throughout their life how to live and when it comes to dying, they should have the same choices.”

Supporters want Massachusetts to follow other states, like Oregon, that have passed similar legislation.