Skip to content

Tenth anniversary assisted dying report shows the law is working well in Oregon (26 March 2008)

26 March 2008

Tenth anniversary assisted dying report shows the law is working well in Oregon

The tenth annual report on the Oregon Death with Dignity Act (ODDA) shows that assisted dying legislation which was introduced in 1997 is working.

341 people have used the ODDA since it came into force. In 2007, 49 people with terminal illnesses used the Act to end their lives.

Sarah Wootton, Chief Executive of Dignity in Dying, who campaign for assisted dying to be legalised for terminally ill, mentally competent adults in the UK, said:

“The report from Oregon is further evidence that legislation allowing terminally ill, mentally competent adults the option of medically assisted dying does work. Evidence shows that there is no risk to any ‘vulnerable’ groups of people.”

“On ODDA’s tenth anniversary, we can clearly see that the Act allows people from Oregon who are suffering unbearably the choice to end their lives with dignity. It is time that British citizens were given the same choice”

Key characteristics of people having assisted dying in Oregon (for 2007):

– 100% had medical insurance
– 88% were enrolled in hospice care
– 90% of patients died at home
– Majority of patients were well educated
– 48 physicians administered a total of 85 prescriptions

The full report can be found at:

For further information please contact 08707 777868 or


Notes to editor

About Dignity in Dying

Dignity in Dying is the leading organisation in the UK that advocates assisted dying for terminally ill patients and campaigns for greater patient choice at the end of life.
The organisation is also the country’s leading provider in information on end-of-life issues.

Dignity in Dying has over 100,000 supporters and receives its funding entirely from donations from the public.

Opinion polls consistently show that at least 80% of the UK population support a change in the law on assisted dying.

An interview with Ashley Riley is available to download at

Media contacts

For all media enquiries, please contact Jessica Tomlin on 020 7479 7736 or 07725 433025 or on