To the editor:

The fast-approaching 2020 primary and general elections tend to overshadow the persistence required to pass legislation. Such is the case with “The End of Life Options Act” (H.4782). After 10 years, Massachusetts is ready to consider the personal end-of-life decisions families make to relieve the suffering of the terminally ill, when the Joint Committee on Public Health recently passed the bill and referred it to the Joint Committee on Healthcare Financing.

If a terminally ill patient’s body betrays them by outliving their quality of life with insufferable pain, why should society require that person to continue to live? It is for that unimaginable situation that I support this legislation.

The legislative session ends on July 31. State Sen. Joan Lovely was an original co-sponsor of the Senate legislation (S.2745). I thanked her (joan.lovely@masenate.gov), and contacted state Rep. Brad Hill (brad.hill@mahouse.gov), and urged them to support its passage out of the Healthcare Financing Committee by July 31. I am also contacting committee Co-chairs state Rep. Daniel Cullinane (Daniel.cullinane@mahouse.gov) and state Sen. Cindy Friedman (cindy.friedman@masenate.gov). I hope you will do the same with your local legislators.

Maine and New Jersey passed similar legislation last year, as did Vermont seven years ago. I think it is our turn.

Heidi Fox

Topsfield

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