Showing posts with label California. Show all posts
Showing posts with label California. Show all posts

Wednesday, May 5, 2021

California Amendments Seek to Weaken Patient Protections, Attestation Provisions Eliminated

Image result for "katy grimes"

By Margaret Dore, Esq.

On February 10, 2021, assisted suicide/euthanasia proponents introduced a bill seeking to amend California's End of Life Option Act. The bill, SB 380, eliminates the Act's 2026 sunset date, and also allows a 15 day waiting period to be shortened to 48 hours in certain circumstances.[1]

Katy Grimes, editor of the California Globe (pictured), had this to say:

When it comes to carrying out the death penalty for convicted murders, the California Legislature finds the lethal drug cocktails "cruel and unusual punishment," which they say is a violation of the Eighth Amendment. Yet lawmakers were more than willing to approve a lethal drug cocktail to allow sick people to kill themselves.  I wrote [this] in 2015 as the California Legislature was considering [passage of the Act].[2]

Thursday, May 31, 2018

California Judge Rejects Motion to Overturn Decision Invalidating Assisted Suicide/Euthanasia Law

Judge Daniel Ottolia has rejected a motion to vacate his decision overturning the deceptively named, "End of Life Options Act," which had legalized assisted suicide and euthanasia. 

The act remains null and void. For more information, click here  

Friday, May 25, 2018

California: Heirs Risk Forfeited Inheritance & Murder Charge If They Kill Victims Under Void Act

By Margaret  Dore, Esq.

In California, a person commits murder in the first degree via "willful, deliberate, and premeditated killing."[1] California also has "slayer statutes," providing that murderers shall not inherit from their victims. As an example, California's Probate Code states:
(a) A person who feloniously and intentionally kills the decedent is not entitled to any of the following:
(1) Any property, interest, or benefit under a will of the decedent, or a trust created by or for the benefit of the decedent or in which the decedent has an interest ...  [2] 

Judgment Entered Declaring Assisted Suicide/Euthanasia Law Unconstitutional & Prospectively Prohibiting Use

Alexandra Snyder, Esq.
Yesterday, Riverside County Judge Daniel A. Ottolia entered judgment declaring California's assisted suicide/euthanasia law void as unconstitutional. The judgment states:
The Court held the End of Life Option Act ("Act") was passed by a special session of the Legislature in violation of Article IV § 3(b) of the California Constitution because the Act is not encompassed by any "reasonable construction" of the Proclamation granting the special session the authority to legislate. The Court therefore held that the Act was void as unconstitutional.

Thursday, May 24, 2018

California Assisted Suicide Law Is Unconstitutional; Decision Upheld by Appeals Court

Alex Schadenberg
Executive Director - Euthanasia Prevention Coalition


Last week, Riverside Superior Court Judge, Daniel Ottolia, overturned California's assisted suicide law when he ruled that the legislature acted outside the scope of its authority [when enacting it]

California passed the state's assisted suicide law in a special health care funding session after the legislature failed to pass the assisted suicide bill in its normal session.

Judge Ottolia, held that "the End of Life Option Act [legalizing assisted suicide] does not fall within the scope of access to healthcare services," and that it "is not a matter of health care funding."

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Judge Rules California Assisted Suicide Law Unconstitutional

NAPA, Calif.,  Life Legal  — A California judge overturned the state’s assisted suicide law this morning, ruling that the legislature acted outside the scope of its authority when it enacted the End of Life Option Act.

The Act’s sponsors introduced the bill in a special session of the legislature convened by Governor Jerry Brown to address Medicaid funding shortfalls, services for the disabled, and in-home health support services.

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Soyer: Who has the Choice in Assisted Suicide?

http://daily-iowan.com/2016/10/25/soyer-who-has-the-choice-in-assisted-suicide

Hannah Soyer
I am a very large supporter of individual choices and the right for individuals to make choices in regard to their own lives. Though, in the context of California’s most recent legislation concerning assisted suicide, the idea of “choice” may be disputed rather than upheld.

Stephanie Packer, a woman living in California who has a terminal form of scleroderma, an autoimmune disease, recently came out saying that her insurance company denied her coverage of chemotherapy but said it would cover doctor-assisted suicide. The insurance originally was going to cover her chemo, but then the End of Life Option Act went into effect on June 9. . .

Soon after this law was passed, Packer received a letter from her insurance company saying it was no longer going to cover her treatment, although the life-ending drugs would be covered.

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Lawsuit Filed to Stop California Assisted Suicide Law!

The Life Legal Defense Foundation filed a lawsuit today challenging California's assisted suicide law.

The civil rights lawsuit alleges Equal Protection violations of individuals labeled terminally ill and was filed by five doctor and by the American Academy of Medical Ethics (AAME),
 
The Act decriminalizes physician-assisted suicide and instantly removes criminal law, elder abuse, and mental-health legal protections from any individual labeled terminally ill.  By contrast, non-labeled Californians have legal protection that makes it a felony to aid, advise, or encourage another to commit suicide.

Monday, May 9, 2016

Two Doctors Convicted of Falsely Certifying Patients as Terminally Ill as Part of $8.8 Million Healthcare Fraud Scheme


LOS ANGELES – Two doctors were found guilty today of federal health care fraud charges for falsely certifying that Medicare patients were terminally ill, and therefore qualified for hospice care, when the vast majority of them were not actually dying.

Following a two-week trial, the doctors were found guilty of participating in a scheme related to the Covina-based California Hospice Care (CHC). Between March 2009 and June 2013, CHC submitted approximately $8.8 million in fraudulent bills to Medicare and Medi-Cal for hospice-related services, and the public health programs paid nearly $7.4 million to CHC.

The two doctors convicted today by a federal jury are:
  • Sri Wijegoonaratna, known as Dr. J., 61, of Anaheim, who was found guilty of seven counts of health care fraud; and
  • Boyao Huang, 43, of Pasadena, who was found guilty of four counts of health care fraud.

Sunday, December 13, 2015

Quick Facts About Assisted Suicide

By Margaret Dore, Esq., MBA
For a pdf version, please click here

1.  Assisted Suicide

Assisted suicide means that someone provides the means and/or information for another person to commit suicide. When a physician is involved, the practice is physician-assisted suicide.

2. The Oregon and Washington Laws

In Oregon, physician-assisted suicide was legalized in 1997 via a ballot measure. In Washington State, a similar law was passed by another ballot measure in 2008 and went into effect in 2009.

3.  Problems With Legalization

The Oregon and Washington laws are a recipe for elder abuse and encourage people with years to live to throw away their lives. In Oregon, there are documented cases of the Oregon Heath Plan (Medicaid) steering patients to physician-assisted suicide via coverage incentives. Oregon’s conventional suicide rate has increased with legalization of assisted suicide, which is consistent with a suicide contagion. Patients and families are traumatized.

The Oregon and Washington laws require the death certificate to be falsified to reflect a natural death via a terminal disease, as opposed to the actual cause of death, a lethal dose. The significance is a lack of transparency and an inability to take legal action against overreaching parties.

Saturday, October 24, 2015

Dore Professional Commentary

http://jurist.org/hotline/2015/10/margaret-dore-physician-assisted-suicide.php
California's New Assisted Suicide Law: Whose Choice Will it Be?
JURIST Guest Columnist, Margaret Dore, Esq., MBA
Editor, Maria Coladonato



California has passed a bill to legalize physician-assisted suicide, which is scheduled to go into effect during 2016. "The End of Life Option Act" was sold as giving patients choice and control at the end of life. The bill, in fact, is about ending the lives of people who are not necessarily dying anytime soon and giving other people the "option" to hurry them along. The bill is a recipe for elder abuse and family trauma. 

Thursday, October 8, 2015

California Killin'

by Paul © -- with apologies to the Mamas and Papas.


Signed by Jerry Brown on an autumn day.


Silencing the lambs, slaughter on the way.


It ain't safe no more; Redding to L.A.


California killin' such a tragic day.

Monday, September 21, 2015

Why California's ABX2-15 Must be Vetoed.

ABX2-15 seeks to legalize physician-assisted suicide and euthanasia in California. The bill is a recipe for elder abuse in which a "qualifying" individual may be legally murdered for the money. For more detail, see this memorandum and its attachments.  


KEY POINTS

1. ABX2-15 applies to people with a "terminal disease," which is defined as having a medical prognosis of less than six months to live. (Memo, p.9). Such persons can, in fact, have years, even decades, to live. The more obvious reasons being misdiagnosis and the fact that predicting life expectancy is not an exact science. (Id., pp. 11-12). Doctors can sometimes be widely wrong. (Id.).

2. In Oregon, which has a nearly identical definition of “terminal disease,” eligible persons include young adults with chronic conditions such as insulin dependent diabetes. (Memo, p. 9-11). Such persons, with appropriate medical care, can have years, even decades, to live. 

3. ABX2-15 allows the patient's heir, who will financially benefit from his/her death, to actively participate in signing the patient up for the lethal dose. (Memo, p. 7). This is an extreme conflict of interest.

4. Once the lethal dose is issued by the pharmacy, there is no oversight. Not even a witness is required when the lethal dose is administered. If the patient protested or even struggled against administration, who would know? (Memo, pp. 8-9).

5. Assisted suicide can be traumatic for family members as well as patients. (Memo., pp. 12-13)

6. If California follows Washington State, the death certificate is required to be falsified to reflect a natural death. (Memo, pp. 16-18). The significance is a lack of transparency and an inability to prosecute for murder even in a case of outright murder for the money. Id. 

Thursday, September 17, 2015

California: Contact the Governor now to stop assisted suicide/euthanasia.

Outright Lies to Trusting Legislators Gets California Bill to Governor's Desk.  Tell Jerry Brown to Veto ABX2-15 Now! 


  • Call 916-445-2841!
  • Fax 916-558-3160 
  • Use this form to send an e-mail to Governor Brown:  https://govnews.ca.gov/gov39mail/mail.php  (US Mail will be too slow)

On Friday, September 11th, ABX2-15 passed the Senate just weeks after its initial introduction during a special session called for another purpose. During its short and expedited life, proponents ran roughshod on the facts to induce busy legislators to vote yes. This was evident during the final floor debate in the Senate where proponents repeatedly stated or implied the following, which are not true:

1.  That the bill is limited to people who are actively dying and in pain. The bill doesn't say this anywhere. The bill, instead, applies to people with a "terminal disease" defined as having a prediction of less than six months to live. (Memo, pp.9 -12). Such persons can, in fact, have years, even decades, to live.  (Id.) In Oregon, which has a nearly identical definition, "eligible" persons include young adults with chronic conditions such as insulin dependent diabetes. (Id).

2.  That the bill is "one of the strongest bills regarding patient protections." The bill, however, doesn't even require a witness when the lethal dose is administered.[1] If the patient protested or struggled, who would know?[2] In addition, the bill's various legal "requirements" are not actually "required." This is because participants are merely held to a "good faith" standard.[3] This standard is not defined in the bill, but common meanings include that participants need not comply with legal technicalities when they have honest intent.  See, for example, this legal dictionary definition:
[Good faith means] honest intent to act without taking an unfair advantage over another person or to fufill a promise to act, even when some legal technicality is not fulfilled.  (Emphasis added).[4] 
For these and other reasons, tell Jerry Brown to veto ABX2-15. For more information, see: Dore letter discussing why the Baker amendments did not fix the bill's problemsDore memo why the financial cost of ABX2-15 could be "enormous"; and a formal memo regarding the bill generally, including "key points," an index, aformal memo and an appendix.

* * *
[1]  See ABX2-15 in its entirety.
[2]  Id.
[3]  ABX2-15, Sections 443.19(d), 443.14(b), 443.14(d)(1) and 443.15(c).
[4]  "Hill" citation at http://legal-dictionary.thefreedictionary.com/good+faith

Friday, September 11, 2015

Governor Brown must veto assisted suicide legislation.


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                                                           
September 11, 2015        

Contact: Margaret Dore
206-697-1217

Sacramento, CA -- In light of today's final passage of assisted suicide legislation by the California State Senate, a national expert on assisted suicide and euthanasia made the following comments. 

"The legislation passed today is a wolf in sheep's clothing," said Margaret Dore, president of Choice is an Illusionregarding ABX2-15, which seeks to legalize physician-assisted suicide (and euthanasia) in California. "The bill is deceptively written to make it look as if there are substantial patient protections; there are not. The bill is sold as giving people choice and control at the end of life: Instead, it's stacked against the patient and applies to people with years, even decades, to live."

"In my law practice, I started out working in guardianships, wills and probate, and saw abuse of all kinds, especially where there was money involved (where there's a will, there are heirs)," Dore explained. "ABX2-15 sets up the perfect crime: your heir can actively participate in signing you up for the lethal dose and once the lethal dose is in the home, there's no oversight --not even a witness is required. If you resisted or even struggled, who would know?"

Dore concluded, "The ball is now in the governor's court to protect the people of California by vetoing ABX2-15. As a lawyer and a former attorney general, Jerry Brown has the expertise to see the bill for what it really is.  He has all the right reasons to veto this deceptive and unsafe legislation.

For documentation, see www.choiceillusion.org and www.californiaagainstassistedsuicide.org

Thursday, September 10, 2015

California Assisted Suicide Bill Narrowly Passes Assembly.

NEWS RELEASE

For the original print version, please click here.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 9, 2015

Contact: Margaret Dore
206-697-1217

Sacramento, CA – In light of today’s narrow passage of assisted suicide legislation by the California State Assembly, a national expert on assisted suicide and euthanasia points out a fundamental flaw with today’s floor debate.

“The assemblymembers didn’t focus on the bill’s language,” said Margaret Dore, president of Choice is an Illusion, regarding ABX2-15, which is modeled on similar laws in Oregon and Washington State.  "The bill is sold as giving people choice and control at the end of life. Yet the bill’s language is stacked against the patient and applies to people with years, even decades, to live.”

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Updated California Materials Against ABX2-15

To view new materials against ABX2-15, seeking to legalize physician-assisted suicide, click here.

If the document is "too big," click here and here for the memo and its appendix as separate documents.

Overview 

ABX2-15, the “End of Life Option Act,” seeking to legalize physician-assisted suicide in California is a recipe for elder abuse.  The bill is not limited to people who are dying.  Indeed, “eligible” persons can have years, even decades, to live.

In Oregon, which has a similar law, that state’s Medicaid program uses coverage incentives to steer people to suicide.  If ABX2-15 is enacted, California’s Medicaid program, as well as private insurers, will be able to engage in this same conduct.  Do you want this to happen to you or your family?

The bill has a myriad of other problems.  Please vote “No” on ABX2-15.

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

California's ABX2-15: Governor Not Impressed; Bill Is But A "New Number With the Same Song."

By Margaret Dore, Esq., MBA

Yesterday, the deceptively named Compassion & Choices unveiled its "new" deceptively named End of Life Option Act to great fanfare in a press credentialed only press conference.

Governor Jerry Brown has already weighed in that the present special session "is not the appropriate venue to consider the issue."

The new bill, ABX2-15, is in substance an old bill (SB 128) that was unable to make it out of committee.

AB 15 has some new provisions and puts some of the old bill's provisions in a different order. ABX2-15 is in substance the same bill as the old bill. Key points include:
  • ABX2-15 applies to patients with a "terminal disease." In Oregon, which has a similar law, such persons include young adults with chronic conditions such as insulin dependent diabetes and chronic lower respiratory disease. People living with HIV/AIDS, who are dependent on their medication to live, also qualify as "terminal." Such persons can have years, even decades, to live. 
  • Once a person is "labeled 'terminal,' an easy justification can be made that his or her treatment or coverage should be denied in favor of someone more deserving."[1] In Oregon, where assisted suicide is legal, patients are not only denied coverage for treatment, they are offered assisted suicide instead.[2] Well known cases are Barbara Wagner and Randy Stroup.[3]
  • The bill remains a recipe for elder abuse in which the patient's heir, who will financially benefit from his or her death, is allowed to actively participate in signing the patient up for the lethal dose. This fact alone does not meet the "stink test." 
  • Once the lethal dose is issued by the pharmacy, there is no oversight. Not even a witness is required at the death. If the patient struggled, who would know?
  • The death certificate is required to be falsified to reflect a natural death. The significance is a lack of transparency and an inability to prosecute for murder even in a case of outright murder for the money.

ABX2-15 is but a new number with the same song. Don't be fooled.

To view a detailed legal/policy analysis of ABX2-15, please click on the following links: Executive summary and indexMemo; and Appendix/Attachments.

* * *

[1] Opinion Letter by Richard Wonderly MD and Attorney Theresa Schrempp, available at https://choiceisanillusion.files.wordpress.com/2012/07/schrempp_wonderly_opn_ltr1.pdf
[2] Id.
[3] Id.

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Memo to the California State Assembly: "No" on SB 128

The original pdf version of this memo has an executive summary and index, which can be viewed here. The attachments can be viewed here.


I. INTRODUCTION.

I am an attorney in Washington State where assisted suicide is legal.[1] Our law is based on a similar law in Oregon. Both laws are similar to the proposed California bill, SB 128.[2] 

Enactment of SB 128 will create new paths of elder abuse. “Eligible” patients will include people with years, even decades, to live.  

I urge you to reject this measure. Do not make Washington’s and Oregon’s mistake.

Saturday, August 1, 2015

California Prohibition Against Assisted Suicide is Constitutional.

Margaret Dore, Esq., MBA

A California trial court has upheld the constitutionality of that state's criminal statute prohibiting assisted suicide, which states:
Every person who deliberately aids, or advises, or encourages another to commit suicide, is guilty of a felony.
Penal Code § 401

The court's reasoning is contained in a 19 page "Ruling on Demurrer," filed on July 24, 2015. The ruling uses the term, "Aid in Dying" to mean physician-assisted suicide.  The term also means euthanasia. The court states in part:
Since "Aid in Dying" is quicker and less expensive, there is a much greater potential for its abuse, e.g,, greedy heirs-in-waiting, cost containment strategies, √≠mpulse decision-making, etc. Moreover, since it can be employed earlier in the dying process, there is a substantial risk that in many cases, it may bring about a patently premature death. For example, consider that a terminally ill patient, not in pain but facing death within the next six months, may opt for “Aid in Dying”' instead of working through what might have been just a transitory period of depression. Further, "Aid in Dying" creates the possible scenario of someone taking his life based upon an erroneous diagnosis of a terminal illness illness, which was, in fact, a mis-diagnosis that could have been brought to light by the passage of time. After all, doctors are not infallible.