Delaware State Representative Paul Baumbach (D-23) and 3 co-sponsors, Representative Bryon Short (D-7), Senator David Sokola (D-8), and Senator Margaret Henry (D-2) introduced HB 160, End of Life Options Act, on May 2, 2017. The bill was assigned to the House Health and Human Development Committee, which passed it on June 7, 2017, sending it to the full House for a vote.
The 2016-2018 session is the second time a Death with Dignity bill was introduced in the Delaware legislature. In 2015, Representative Baumbach introduced HB 150, a Death with Dignity bill as well. The bill was tabled in Committee.
While the bill did not have enough support to move forward, another bill in the same session related to end-of-life options did become law: HB 64, Delaware Medical Orders for Scope of Treatment Act, established a different end-of-life option.
With more than a quarter of Delaware’s population reaching age 60 in the next few years, Death with Dignity and related topics will continue to pique the public’s interest.