Deadly prescriptions on the rise

Deadly prescriptions on the rise

Deadly prescriptions on the rise

Assisted suicide is a booming business in Oregon, but stats show the law is not necessarily being followed.

Business has steadily increased in the state since doctor assisted suicide was enacted in 1997. Oregon Right to Life's Lois Anderson tells AFN the 2023 summary shows an increase in prescriptions for that purpose by 30% and a 20% increase in reported deaths after consuming the drugs.

Anderson, Lois (Oregon Right to Life) Anderson

"It's been more than 20 years," she notes. "We're allowing it in Oregon for Oregon residents, but this also reflects the fact that people can come here from out of state. It's just grieving that that many people felt so helpless and desperate that they wanted to ingest poison and take their own life."

According to the so-called "Death with Dignity Act," assisted suicide is specifically for people with a terminal illness with less than six months to live.

"They do report on how many days between receiving the prescription and death," Anderson relays. "The highest number was over 1,100 days, which, if my math is right, is about four years. So, this range … at six months and less to live, it's all something to be gravely concerned about."

According to the summary, most individuals who took the fatal dose said they opted to do so because of loss of autonomy, lack of ability to participate in enjoyable activities, and loss of dignity – not pain or a terminal illness.