Right to die

After seeing her mother suffer through the last days of her life, YOURLifeChoices member Joy does not want to suffer the same fate, but is not sure she has any legal right to die.

Q. Joy
There has been a lot of talk about people making a document that will not allow them to go on living when there is no living left. I do not want to die as my mum did. For five years she lived an almost vegetative state.  She was helped into a chair; she was moved back into bed; she was fed mush with a spoon until she could no longer swallow. Then Mum was fed via an IV. Mum no longer knew who anyone was, nor did she react to her surroundings, she just sat there.

Is there any organisation which is championing the right to die when one no longer knows they are living? 

Firstly, you should look into creating an advanced health care directive. This document protects your legal rights to:

  • refuse unwanted medical treatment
  • protect your right to receive desired medical treatment, and?
  • ensure you receive relief from pain and suffering to the maximum extent that is reasonable in the circumstances.

To find out more about what is covered in an advanced health care directive, or how one can be created, read our article Do I have a say in my medical treatment?

There are many people who feel strongly about the choice of when one ends their life and there are several state-based organisations which offer support and advocacy. To find out more about supporting the push for the legal right to die, click on your state and organisation below.

NSW – Dying with Dignity
VIC – Dying with Dignity
QLD – Dying with Dignity
TAS – Dying with Dignity