Medical Aid in Dying

In 2019 we surveyed our members to learn more about their opinions on medical aid in dying. As expected, we have members with views and beliefs on all sides of the issue. The Medical Aid in Dying Workgroup and Board of Directors have decided to use this page to curate resources about medical aid in dying to with the goal of educating and informing our members so you can make educated decisions for you and your patients.

AAFP Adopts Position of Engaged Neutrality on Medical Aid in Dying

During the 2018 AAFP Congress of Delegates, delegates approved a substitute resolution offered by the Reference Committee on Health of the Public and Science to adopt a position of "engaged neutrality" toward medical aid in dying as a personal end-of-life decision in the context of the physician-patient relationship.

The WAFP has followed suit and is providing these resources as a way to educate our members on both sides of the issue, so you can make your own informed decisions.

Clinical Criteria for Medical Aid in Dying

Published in the Journal of Palliative Medicine on March 6, 2019

This resource examines states that have enacted aid in dying (AID) statues and provides an overview of the requirements in those states.

Copyright © David Orentlicher, et al., Published by Mary Ann Liebert, Inc.
This Open Access article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly credited.

End-of-Life Care: Managing Common Symptoms

Am Fam Physician. 2017 Mar 15;95(6):356-361

Physicians should be proficient at managing symptoms as patients progress through the dying process. When possible, proactive regimens that prevent symptoms should be used, because it is generally easier to prevent than to treat an acute symptom.

Curbside Consultation: Medical Aid in Dying

Am Fam Physician. 2018 Mar 1;97(5):339-343.

This case study looks at a physician (in a state that does not allow medical aid in dying) who was asked by a patient for physician assistance in this end of life process.

The article also includes links to AAFP position statements on the issue, features of medical aid in dying laws from across the country, and examples of meaningful activities for patients with life-limiting illness.

International changes in end-of-life practices over time: a systematic review

End-of-life policies are hotly debated in many countries, with international evidence frequently used to support or oppose legal reforms. Existing reviews are limited by their focus on specific practices or selected jurisdictions. The objective is to review international time trends in end-of-life practices.

This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License ( The article was originally published by Chao et al. BMC Health Services Research (2016) 16:539 DOI 10.1186/s12913-016-1749-z and is available here: No changes were made to the article when posted to The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver ( applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated.

A Hawaii Doctor’s Journey Toward Embracing Medical Aid In Dying

A year before Hawaii adopted medical aid in dying as an end-of-life recourse for terminally ill patients, Jeanne Elder told her oncologist in 2018 that she might wish to drink a lethal cocktail to end her life if she were ever suffering and out of treatment options.

This article was originally published on January 24, 2020 on

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