Act 39, Vermont Patient Choice and Control at the End of Life Act has been in effect since May 2013. The sunset provision on certain patient safeguards was removed in May 2015.
As of December 2016, 38 Vermont residents have received prescriptions under the state’s assisted death law, according to media reports.
Following our successful 10-year campaign to promote a Vermont aid-in-dying bill, in collaboration with the local partner Patient Choices Vermont, the Vermont state legislature passed the Act in 2013. Governor Peter Shumlin signed the Act on May 20, 2013. The law went into effect immediately. Vermont thus became the third state to enact a Death with Dignity law, the first to be passed through legislation.
The Vermont law is very similar to the Oregon and Washington Death with Dignity Acts in offering end-of-life options with strong safeguards against abuse.