Cancer patient John Radcliffe poised to be come first to use medical aid-in-dying law

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As of Jan. 1, 2019, terminally ill patients with six months or less to live, can choose to peacefully end their own life.

That’s part of the Our Care, Our Choice Act that went into effect on January 1.

Lawmakers have discussed this issue a number of times over the past two decades.
One of its main supporters, John Radcliffe, is poised to become the first patient in Hawaii to request a prescription for medical aid-in-dying medication.
He was diagnosed with incurable cancer in 2014.

“I want to ensure that our terminally ill residents understand their rights and that those who wish to access this end of life option can do so,” said John Radcliffe, Medical Aid-In-Dying Advocate. “We have a wonderful and merciful state here in Hawaii and we should all be so grateful that we have had this opportunity to live here.”

Safeguards of the act include confirmation by two health care providers of the patient’s diagnosis, two verbal requests, and one written request from the patient as well as patient counseling.

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