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Vermont Opens Its Assisted Suicide Laws to Out-of-State Residents

By Cara Murez HealthDay Reporter

TUESDAY, May 2, 2023 (HealthDay News) -- People seeking medically assisted suicide from any state can now get it in Vermont.

The state is the first to allow those with terminal illnesses from out of state to end their lives within its borders, the Associated Press reported.

Republican Gov. Phil Scott signed a bill Tuesday removing a requirement that those seeking medically assisted suicide in the state must be Vermont residents.

“We are grateful to Vermont lawmakers for recognizing that a state border shouldn’t determine if you die peacefully or in agony,” Kim Callinan, president and CEO of Compassion & Choices, a nonprofit advocacy organization, said in a statement. “Patients routinely travel to other states to utilize the best health care options. There is no rational reason they shouldn’t be able to travel to another state to access medical aid in dying if the state they live in doesn’t offer it.”

Ten U.S. states allow medically assisted suicide, according to the AP.

Another state, Oregon, last year agreed to stop enforcing its residency requirement for the lethal medication. That was part of a court settlement in which the state also agreed to ask its legislature to remove the residency requirement, the AP reported.

Vermont had already settled with a Connecticut woman with terminal cancer who wanted to seek medically assisted suicide in the state, the AP reported.

More information

Brandeis University in Massachusetts has more on assisted suicide.

SOURCE: Associated Press

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