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Posted on November 30, 2019 at 3:30 AM

Earlier this month, Dr. Stefanie Green delivered a tremendous presentation at the Hemlock Society of San Diego. Watch the video below.

This a great summary of how medical aid in dying (MAID) works in Canada. It is also a great summary of how Canadian MAID might be changing over the next few years.

Notably, Dr. Green estimates that there have been over 10,000 MAID deaths in Canada. That is the sum total. The numbers are highly variable from province to province. The 10,000 figure is notable, because Canada only started MAID in 2016. In contrast, Oregon started over twenty years ago. If Oregon had the population of Canada, it would have had fewer than 5000 MAID deaths in the same time period (150 deaths x. 3.5 years x. 9). If one projects the figures from Oregon’s first 3.5 years, it would have had fewer than 500 MAID deaths.

In other words, the Canadian MAID rate is double the current Oregon rate. The Canadian MAID rate during its first 3.5 years is 20 times the Oregon rate during its first 3.5 years. 

This giant difference is probably due to the safer and more effective protocol in Canada which involves direct clinician administration in 99.9% of MAID deaths. The US “self-ingestion” approach has a significant side effect and failure rate. The US approach also fails to assess capacity at the time of ingestion.

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