End of Life Choices

End of Life Choices

California End of Life Option Act (Medical Aid in Dying)

California Law since June 9th, 2016

When the End of Life Option Act (EOLOA) was signed by California  Governor Jerry Brown on October 5, 2015 and went into effect on June 9, 2016, it laid a solid foundation for all Californians to be supported in their end of life wishes. It represents a major step forward in the nationwide effort to change state laws to better reflect humane values. The new law was patterned after the country’s first groundbreaking law, Oregon’s Death with Dignity Act in effect since 1997 and Washington State’s Death with Dignity Act in effect since 2009. LEARN MORE

VSED (Voluntarily Stopping Eating and Drinking)

What is VSED?

VSED (voluntary stopping of eating and drinking) is the conscious act of a person to intentionally stop eating and drinking with the goal of ending their life. The decision to use VSED relies solely on a competent person’s preference and determination to control his or her own dying. VSED is a natural process by which people have historically chosen to die in many cultures, as they’ve lost their appetite as a natural process at the end of their lives. Hospice nurses in Oregon rated VSED a “good death” giving it an 8 out of 9 as a peaceful way to go.  LEARN MORE

Stopping Unwanted Medical Treatment

Treatments for certain health conditions or to prolong life, such as use of a ventilator, a feeding tube, IV hydration, antibiotics or other medications and cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR), can be refused or stopped at any time. Sometimes, more treatment is helpful, but it can also unnecessarily prolong the dying process and increase suffering without improving quality of life. LEARN MORE

Hospice

Hospice care is a type of care and philosophy of care that focuses on the palliation (alleviation) of a chronically ill, terminally ill or seriously ill person’s pain and symptoms, and attending to their emotional and spiritual needs. In Western society, the concept of hospice has been evolving in Europe since the 11th century. Then, and for centuries thereafter, hospices were places of hospitality for the sick, wounded, or dying, as well as those for travelers and pilgrims. The modern concept of hospice here in the US includes comfort care for … LEARN MORE

Palliative Care

Palliative care is specialized medical care for people living with a serious or chronic illness. This type of care is focused on relief from the symptoms and stress of a serious illness. The goal is to improve quality of life for both the patient and the family. Palliative care is a relatively new field of medicine and is provided by a specially trained team of doctors, nurses and other specialists who work together with a patient’s other doctors to provide an extra layer of support. It is appropriate at any age and at any stage … LEARN MORE

Palliative Terminal/Sedation

Palliative Sedation, sometimes called terminal sedation, involves being medicated to the point of the loss of consciousness. Typically the person remains unconscious until death. At the same time, all nutrition and fluids are stopped. Palliative sedation is often a good option for those suffering from extreme pain and suffering.  Palliative sedation must be medically managed by a healthcare provider and must be provided in a hospital or institutional setting such as an inpatient hospice facility. It is rarely provided at home. LEARN MORE

Natural Death

One of the ways a natural death can be achieved is through VSED   Some people feel strongly that they only want a death that occurs as a natural part of life, meaning no hastening or prolonging of the dying process in any way.  This is common in many cultures and as one more valid choice at the end of life, we support that as we can. LEARN MORE

End of Life Choices California provides information and personal support regarding California’s End of Life Option Act and all other legal end-of-life options to the medical community and to the public.