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Jana's story: My husband’s assisted death spared him the suffering he feared most

When Jana Buhlmann's husband, Chris, celebrated his 41st birthday, it was a bittersweet occasion because they both knew it would be his last. The very next day, Chris was scheduled to have his medically assisted death. He struggled with the decision, but he knew his grim prognosis and the imminent intolerable suffering on the road ahead. Assisted dying offered him another, more compassionate path instead, Jana writes.

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How one family’s assisted dying story effected real change in their community

In August, Debra Westbrook and her family spoke out in their local newspaper and on our blog about the obstruction their father faced in his months-long struggle to access assisted dying at their local hospital. Less than two months later, that same hospital made a major change to prevent the same thing from happening again. In this special update, Debra writes about how she and her family were able to inspire change in their community — and makes a call for others to do the same.

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Denise's story: My husband's medically assisted death was a compassionate gift

A few months after Denise's husband, Ed, was diagnosed with cardiac amyloidosis, he began to feel "trapped" in his body. Ed, who had lost the ability to move or do the things he loved, was so relieved to discover that he qualified for a medically assisted death. In this blog post, Denise tells the story of her husband's devastating disease and the days and weeks leading up to the peaceful death he so desired.

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Video: What it's like to provide assisted dying for the first time

Many recent documentaries and magazine articles have delved into what it’s like to support a family member who's accessed their right to assisted dying.

But fewer have explored what it’s like for the handful of doctors and nurse practitioners in Canada who are involved in providing medical assistance in dying (MAID). Their insights provide another side to the story, and they are essential to our understanding of how the right to assisted dying is changing the way Canadians experience the dying process.

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Liana Brittain: How assisted dying has changed the way Canadians experience death

The passage of Canada's medical assistance in dying law has transformed the way some Canadians experience the dying process. In her latest blog post, Liana Brittain reflects on this change and reminisces about how she and her husband, Paul, planned for his assisted death. 

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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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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 medical assistance 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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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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