Brittany Maynard and the Search for Better End-of-Life Care in the U.S.

November 5, 2014 6:46 PM

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Brittany Maynard and the Search for Better End-of-Life Care in the U.S.

Brittany Maynard, a 29-year-old newlywed with an incurable brain tumor, chose to die with dignity at her home in Oregon this weekend. The manner of her death and her public discussion of her decisions have brought renewed attention to the right-to-die movement in the U.S. This has also, unsurprisingly, reignited the controversy surrounding a practice variously known as euthanasia, assisted suicide, aid-in-dying, and death with dignity.

Currently five states have laws allowing some form of physician-assisted suicide in the U.S. Though records are incomplete, it is estimated that only a small number of patients actually avail themselves of these rights. Where assisted suicide is not legal, terminally-ill individuals still seek assis...

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