Per Jim Hochberg, Hawaii State Senator Joshua Green, MD, has authorized release of the Attorney General's opinion rejecting C & C's claim that assisted suicide is "already legal" in Hawaii. The opinion states in part:
"Dear Senator Green:
Re: Hawaii law on assistance with dying
You have asked (1) whether §453-1, Hawaii Revised Statutes (HRS), authorizes a physician to assist a terminally ill patient with dying when requested by or on behalf of the patient, and (2) whether any criminal laws prohibit aid in dying.
We are assuming that a physician’s assistance with dying would consist of prescribing a lethal dose of medication that a terminally ill patient could take to bring on a swifter and possibly more peaceful death than would otherwise ensue. Our analysis addresses only this method of assistance. Briefly, (1) we do not believe that §453-1 provides authority for a physician to assist with dying, and (2) a physician who provided such assistance could be charged under Hawaii’s manslaughter statute. . . ."
To view the entire opinion, click here.