993 Summer 2020 Medical Aid in Dying
Tuesday, 9:40–11:05, July 28
Instructor: Mike Pearlman
Most people are unsure how they’ll react when they know death is imminent. It’s difficult for healthy people to imagine how well they’ll be able to tolerate severe pain or disability. Some people facing the prospect of imminent death are willing to accept serious pain or reduced quality of life to have more time. Others would choose a different path if they could, or at least want the comfort of having a full range of options available. This presentation will share updated information about end-of-life options, including medical aid in dying (MAID). In 2018 MAID became available in three additional states. Currently, nine states and Washington, DC, have legalized MAID for terminally ill, mentally capable adults. Today, over one in five Americans lives in jurisdictions having the MAID option. The presentation will allow people to share experiences and to discuss MAID calmly and thoughtfully. Attendees will also hear about the current efforts to legalize MAID in Virginia.
Mike Pearlman is a volunteer with the Northern Virginia Action Team of Compassion and Choices. He worked in the Washington, DC, and federal prison systems for over 30 years. He has been a college adjunct for over 25 years, teaching criminal justice and sociology courses. He also has served on the national board of directors for a non-profit organization dedicated to providing education and support to patients, families, and caregivers for a rare disease that currently has no cure.