The bill, known as the End of Life Option Act, was passed in the state Assembly on Wednesday – however, California Governor Jerry Brown has given no indication of whether he intends to sign the bill into law, and has until October 11 to decide.
As reported by the Wall Street Journal, the bill grants those patients with an estimated life expectancy of six months or less to undertake aid-in-dying options.
The act was inspired by 29-year-old Brittany Maynard, who was diagnosed with terminal brain cancer and forced to move from San Francisco Bay Area to Oregon in order to gain assistance in ending her own life. The right-to-die with dignity has been available in Oregon since 1997.
Ms Maynard recorded a video in the weeks prior to her death, in which she appealed to lawmakers.
— Nine News LA (@9NewsLA) September 12, 2015
“I am heartbroken that I had to leave behind my home, my community and my friends in California. But I am dying and I refuse to lose my dignity. I refuse to subject myself and my family to purposeless, prolonged pain and suffering at the hands of an incurable disease,” she said in the video.
I refuse to lose my dignity.
The new bill requires that those seeking aid-in-dying options submit a written request, in addition to two spoken requests made at least 15 days apart.
It also stipulates that they must possess the mental capacity necessary to administer to their own health care needs.