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Kate Cheney’s Story

Assisted Suicide:

Doctor Shopping is REAL and Deadly

Medium shot of an older white woman sitting on a red and cream striped couch. A brown dachshund dog sits beside her looking out a window. The woman has white hair and glasses, wears a green shirt.

Kate Cheney’s Story

Her, “choices may be influenced by her family’s wishes and her daughter, Erika, may be some what coercive.”

Kate Cheney, 85 requested assisted suicide drugs and was originally denied by her physician, but her daughter shopped for a doctor until one wrote the prescription. The second physician ordered a psychiatric evaluation which found that Kate was not competent to make the decision, so she was sent to yet another psychologist who deemed she was. The second psychologist noted the possibility of coercion by the daughter, but Kate received the prescription regardless and died. In 2009, 57 of the 59 assisted suicide deaths in Oregon were clients of a leading proponent organization, Compassion & Choices.

Stevens, Concentration of Oregon’s Assisted Suicide Prescriptions & Deaths from a small number of Prescribing Physicians.

We are proud to introduce our next Coalitions Director, María José Fernandez Flores!​

María José came to apply through our mutual connections at California League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC), the oldest and largest Latino civil rights organization. She has worked in direct lobbying and worked in coalitions on human dignity issues, including assisted suicide, restorative justice, immigrant rights, victim empowerment, and advocacy on behalf of incarcerated persons. María José is a proud dreamer, born in Lima, Peru, who grew up in Northern California. She has an intuitive sense and passion for this issue, and we are grateful for her leadership and perspective…

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BMJ article about increased patient suicide draws wrong conclusions

A BMJ article titled “Some groups of terminally ill patients are twice as likely to die by suicide, data show” draws the wrong conclusion from the data surrounding increased patient suicide. The study referenced in the article, done by the Office for National Statistics, records that patients with some serious conditions are twice as likely as the general population to kill themselves compared to control groups with similar socio-demographic characteristics…

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Introducing Deputy Coalitions Director for Disability Outreach

The Patients’ Rights Action Fund (PRAF) is pleased to announce a new focus for our colleague, Ian McIntosh, who will now be our Deputy Coalitions Director for Disability Outreach. He has long personal experiences with the intersection of disability and healthcare. Those experiences include being a patient/consumer as a person with a disability whose life was significantly affected following a serious car accident; as an end-of-life caregiver; and as a spouse to a person with disabilities.

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