A look at use of Oregon's law on assisted suicide

AP News
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Posted: Nov 03, 2014 8:57 AM
A look at use of Oregon's law on assisted suicide

Oregon voters approved a law allowing terminally ill people to end their lives in 1994, but opponents persuaded a federal judge to issue an injunction temporarily blocking the law. Voters in November 1997 overwhelmingly reaffirmed the nation's first aid-in-dying law, and it's been in place ever since.

According to state statistics compiled through Dec. 31, 2013:

— People who have used the law since late 1997: 752 (396 men, 356 women)

— People younger than 35 who have used the law: 6

— Median age of the deceased: 71

— Percentage of the deceased who were white: 97

— Percentage who had at least some college: 72

— Percentage of patients who informed relatives of their decision: 94

— Percentage of patients who died at a home: 95 percent

— Median minutes between ingestion of lethal drug and unconsciousness: 5

— Median minutes between ingestion and death: 25

— Number of terminally ill people who have moved to Oregon to die: unknown