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Randy Stroup’s Story

Assisted Suicide:

Fighting Deadly Profit Motives
A close up of a bearded white man wearing a baseball cap and a navy blue shirt.

Randy Stroups’s Story

“No man has got the right to offer money to have somebody else killed.”

After requesting coverage for cancer treatment that had measurable success in easing cancer attendant pain, Randy received a letter from the Oregon Health Plan that rejected his request and simultaneously offered end-of-life care and assisted suicide instead. Randy was able to advocate for himself despite the Plan’s offer.

Since the chemotherapy drug Randy requested would not certainly extend his life by 5 years, the state’s rationed care system rejected the request. The state’s budget-starved program is denying patients care, which is costly, and instead steers patients towards one of two options: poorly administrated, limitedly accessible palliative and hospice care or assisted suicide. It is easier for the state for patients to kill themselves than to give coverage to everyone who asks, especially when a patient is “not worth the investment” because it is assumed they are not likely to outlive a prognosis.

 

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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