Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Compassion & Choices compiles Oregon official assisted suicide statistics

Wesley Smith
Wesley Smith has just blogged an issue that may explain why the Oregon assisted suicide statistics are being completely whitewashed.

When analyzing the Oregon yearly reports, it is clear that very little essential information is found in the reports and the Oregon Department of Health has no way of knowing if every assisted suicide death was reported.

If the information in Smith's blog article is correct, then it confirms why the annual Oregon reports appear more like a cover-up than a report.

Smith stated:
This could be huge, because it exposes the entire charade that is the Oregon “oversight” over the act of legalized physician-assisted suicide.
Here’s the story: Recently when Scotland was considering legalizing assisted suicide–which failed in the Scottish Parliament–two Oregonians very close to the practice in their state testified by video link. One was Deborah Whiting Jaques, executive director of the Oregon Hospice Association. The other was Dr. Linda Ganzini, a professor of psychiatry and medicine at the Oregon Health and Science University, who has conducted a number of studies on the law. From the International Task Force on Euthanasia and Assisted Suicide Update story (Vol. 4 # 4, 2010), taken from the (9/7/10) transcript of the Scottish Parliament committee hearing:
When the committee asked the two women to describe Oregon’s official doctor-assisted suicide oversight and monitoring procedures, Jaques replied:

We do not have a monitoring committee approach. Physicians are responsible for reporting death with dignity to the Department of Human Services. The Compassion and Choices agency [Me: It is actually a private assisted suicide advocacy group] produces the reports, collects the data and provides them to the State of Oregon, which ensures that the data are published and made publicly available on an annual basis.
Are you kidding me? If this is true, it confirms everything opponents of assisted suicide have said about the unreliability of the Oregon statistics, the paucity of the actual oversight, and how the law should be retitled: The Compassion and Choices Empowerment Act.

Now you know why Stephen Drake of Not Dead Yet refers to C & C as conflation and con jobs rather than compassion and choices.

Smith then stated that he will have more information on this soon.

1 comment:

Alex Schadenberg said...

Wesley Smith has reported that the Oregon Health Authority has denied any involvement by Compassion & Choices in compiling the stats.

Link: http://www.firstthings.com/blogs/secondhandsmoke/2010/12/27/update-on-compassion-and-choices-role-in-oregon-assisted-suicide-official-statistics/