Patient Choices Vermont (PCV) is pleased to celebrate the settlement of a lawsuit filed last August challenging the constitutionality of the Vermont residency requirement in our medical-aid-in-dying law (Act 39). The settlement means that plaintiff Lynda Shannon Bluestein, a terminally ill cancer patient from Connecticut, will now have access to medical-aid-in-dying services in Vermont. The settlement further stipulates that Vermont officials will support removal of the residency requirement from the law.
Act 39, adopted in May 2013, enables terminally ill Vermonters who are capable of making their own medical decisions, to request and receive medication to bring about a hastened death at a time of their choosing. Act 39, like similar medical-aid-in-dying laws in other states, currently makes end-of-life choice only available to Vermont state residents.
The lawsuit was filed on August 25, 2022, by PCV Board Member Dr. Diana Barnard and her Connecticut patient Lynda Shannon Bluestein, in collaboration with Compassion & Choices.
Since 2013, PCV has worked to educate and expand the network of Vermont's medical providers who support terminally ill patients who want a choice at the end of life using Act 39.
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Patient Choices Vermont
PO Box 671
Shelburne, VT 05482