[Ed. – The unconscionable nature of this is impossible to overstate.]
California’s End of Life Option Act, which went into effect earlier this year, legalized assisted suicide for the terminally ill who have the “capacity to make medical decisions.” (Please note that having this capacity is not the same as being mentally “competent.” That implied conflation is a ruse often deployed in assisted-suicide legalization schemes.) If the death-prescribing doctor suspects a mental illness, he or she “shall refer the individual for a mental health specialist assessment.” Thereafter, a lethal prescription should be written only “if the patient is not suffering from impaired judgment due to a mental disorder.”
Those provisions would seem to preclude access to assisted suicide for patients who are involuntarily hospitalized in state psychiatric institutions. After all, these are people with severe psychosis or emotional disturbance. But apparently state bureaucrats don’t see it that way. Soon after the California law went into effect, a regulation was quietly promulgated guaranteeing institutionalized mentally ill patients access to assisted suicide if they have been diagnosed with a terminal illness. Not only that, but the rule permits such people to receive a court-ordered release from institutionalization—not because their underlying condition has been successfully treated, but for the specific purpose of killing themselves with drugs prescribed by a doctor.