It is mostly a private affair since there is rarely a nurse or doctor present. Some are fighting to make this practice behind closed doors legal nationwide. Some people are told they have just weeks to live and are experiencing inoperative brain cancer from tumors that grow quickly and the pressure and pain in the head is unbearable. They get bloated by the medication to control the brain swelling but they are also in pain. These people are grateful to find a way to end their life. The lethal medication allows someone to slip into a sleep they will never wake up from within a half hour. The alternative is for one to endure weeks of gradual decline. This is for people who are not afraid to die.
The pain, loss of eyesight and seizures is not a way anyone wants to die from. People are now packing up and moving to Oregon to die. Once a resident, one must make 2 formal written requests to a doctor, fill out a written form called a “Request For Medication to End My Life in a Humane and Dignified Manner,” have 2 physicians to declare that you are mentally competent and are expected to have less than six months to live. The medication often prescribed is Secobarbitol a medication in small doses causes sleep. In large doses causes death. A patient gets a prescription of 100 tablets in which each one must be opened up individually and one by one the powder poured into a glass and the contents dissolved in water.
Since 1997 more than 1,500 prescriptions have been filed. Over 1/3 of people who requested it never took the medication. Some die naturally. Some wait for that last break in discovery of some kind of cure but most take the lethal drink before they get a stroke and can’t do it for themselves. Most doctors won’t describe why they authorized the medication due to doctor patient privacy. Should we be in control when we are facing the end of our lives? Should a doctor be in control? Who is to judge when the burden of living is intolerable? These are statistics and not emotional deaths. Who should cry when someone doesn’t want to be here anymore? Is there beauty in strugal? Does any God want us to suffer?
Many feel that Oregon’s law is flawed because the doctors don’t know their patients well enough. Lethat medication should not be given for depression. After the prescription is given there is no follow up required of any physician. It is a conflict of interest for doctors because suddenly they are no longer in the business of helping people for their wellbeing but now they are hastening death by giving people massive overdoses. We need a vote on this one for all states to comply.