Follow the Money: Oregon pays for assisted suicide but not suicide prevention for adults

Alex Schadenberg, Executive Director - Euthanasia Prevention Coalition

Wesley Smith

Wesley Smith

Bioethicist, lawyer and cultural commentator, Wesley Smith, examines the Oregon policy of paying for assisted suicide in an article that was published, today, in the Weekly Standard.

In his article, Smith first comments on the celebration of Brittany Maynard's death, that became a massive campaign by the assisted suicide lobby, as compared to the near silence surrounding the life and death of Lauren Hill, who had the same condition but choose to live, continue to play basketball on her college team and raise money to fight cancer.

Smith examines the policies that have led to 859 Oregonians dying by assisted suicide, a state that also has the second highest "other suicide" rate that is 41% higher than the national average. Smith states:

A government’s priorities dictate its spending choices. Oregon uses federal and state money for youth suicide prevention. But even though one in five suicides in Oregon occurs among “older adults,” the anti-assisted-suicide Physicians for Compassionate Care found that the Oregon Health Authority does not fund adult suicide prevention services. As an OHA bureaucrat responded when answering an inquiry from a state legislator, “Staff resources to work on older adult suicide development have not been developed in OHA.” 

Link to the full article