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Judy's story: I support advance requests for assisted dying because my husband's last years were horrifying

When Brian was diagnosed with an aggressive form of Parkinson's, he and his wife, Judy, read everything they could about his disease and his prognosis. They wanted to be ready and to know what to expect. Sadly, nothing could have prepared them for a reality that was far worse than they had ever anticipated. In this blog post, Judy, who asked that her real name not be used to protect her privacy, writes honestly about her husband's horrifying last years and why she wishes his right to end-of-life choice had been respected.

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Liana Brittain: Will I have access to assisted dying?

Liana Brittain lives in excruciating chronic pain, but the federal assisted dying law offers her little hope. In her latest blog post, Liana writes about the changes she desperately wants to see made to the law, and calls on her fellow baby boomers to mobilize in support of real choice and compassion at end of life.

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Dr. David Amies: Are attitudes toward assisted dying changing?

Informal polls conducted at the Canadian Medical Association's annual general meeting on August 23 show rising support among doctors for medical assistance in dying. Dr. David Amies writes about the significance of these results and wonders if this is a tell-tale sign of changing attitudes toward the once polarizing issue of assisted dying.

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Debra's story: My father was forced to suffer for months before he could access assisted dying

It was a horrifying emotional and physical roller coaster that never seemed to end. Austin, an Ontario-based man whose last name has been withheld for privacy reasons, first made the request to die with dignity in late 2016, at the age of 89. Time and time again, his access was cruelly denied and obstructed by medical professionals. His daughter, Debra, writes about her father's months-long struggle to access his final wish.

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Liana Brittain: Dying With Dignity Canada was the lifeline I needed after my husband’s assisted death

For Liana Brittain, the days, weeks, and months after her husband, Paul, accessed his right to a peaceful death have been both painful and surreal. Unsure of where to go for support, she turned to Dying With Dignity Canada and ended up finding new purpose and life after loss.

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AB, plaintiff in landmark Ontario assisted dying case, dies at 77

It is with both relief and sorrow that we announce the passing of AB, the Ontario woman whose court action has helped to clarify Canada’s assisted dying law.

AB died last week, with medical assistance, after living for more than 30 years with an excruciating form of osteoarthritis. She was 77 years old.

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In Case You Missed It: July 2017

In Case You Missed It is a monthly round-up of news articles and commentaries featuring Dying With Dignity Canada speakers and stories. Did you miss these stories in July?

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Why I chose to have a medically assisted death

A Dying With Dignity Canada supporter explains in her own words why she chose medical assistance in dying and offers advice to all Canadians planning for end of life.

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Excerpt: Dr. David Amies' new book on assisted dying in Canada

As a former regular contributor to the Dying With Dignity Canada blog, and an active member of both our Physicians Advisory Council and our Lethbridge chapter, Dr. David Amies has solidified his reputation as a leading commentator on medical assistance in dying (MAID) and end-of-life issues. Now, he's sharing his expertise in a newly released book, Medical Aid in Dying Canada 2017, which takes a closer look at the history of MAID in Canada, the state and implementation of Canada's assisted dying law and its possibilities for the future.

Dr. Amies has graciously shared an excerpt from his book on our blog — read it below!

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Daughter-in-law’s letter to justice minister highlights flaws in assisted dying law

Sarah is immensely grateful that her father-in-law had the option of medical assistance in dying (MAID) available to him when he was admitted to palliative care earlier this year.

Living with terminal cancer and suffering consistent blood loss in his final days, her father-in-law had simply had enough. He made his wishes crystal clear — he wanted to end his life peacefully with the help of a doctor — and his wishes were eventually honoured.

It’s what happened in between the initial request and the provision of assistance in dying, though, that prompted Sarah to send a stern, but respectful, letter to the federal government. 

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