Cindy L. Cain, PhDAssistant ProfessorDepartment of SociologyUniversity of Alabama at BirminghamBirmingham, AL 35233 

Majority of Surveyed Hospitals Prohibit Physician Participation in End of Life Option Act Interview with:

Cindy L. Cain, PhDAssistant ProfessorDepartment of SociologyUniversity of Alabama at BirminghamBirmingham, AL 35233 

Dr. Cain

Cindy L. Cain, PhD
Assistant Professor
Department of Sociology
University of Alabama at Birmingham
Birmingham, AL 35233 What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Response: The End of Life Option Act permits terminally ill Californians to request a prescription for medications that would hasten death, providing they meet all requirements of the law and follow the steps outlined by their health care provider.

However, the law also allows health care providers and organizations to opt out of participating. Until now, we did not know how common it was for entire health care organizations to opt out.

In this study, we found that 61% of the surveyed hospitals prohibited physician participation in the End of Life Option Act. Thirty-nine percent of hospitals did allow participation in the law; these participating hospitals were less likely to be religiously affiliated and more likely to be nonprofit. What should readers take away from your report? 

Response: Policies set by health care organizations affect patient access to the End of Life Option Act. What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this work?

Response: Much of the care for people at end of life happens outside hospital settings, so more research is needed on the policies of these other settings. We also need more research on physicians’ willingness to participate in the End of Life Option Act. Is there anything else you would like to add? 

Response: This research was funded by the California Health Care Foundation and the Stupski Foundation. 


Cain CL, Koenig BA, Starks H, et al. Hospital Responses to the End of Life Option ActImplementation of Aid in Dying in CaliforniaJAMA Intern Med. Published online April 08, 2019. doi:10.1001/jamainternmed.2018.8690


[wysija_form id=”3″]

Apr 8, 2019 @ 6:13 pm


The information on is provided for educational purposes only, and is in no way intended to diagnose, cure, or treat any medical or other condition. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health and ask your doctor any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. In addition to all other limitations and disclaimers in this agreement, service provider and its third party providers disclaim any liability or loss in connection with the content provided on this website.


1 Comment
  • Bradley Williams
    Posted at 19:04h, 09 April Reply

    Potential for abuse abounds with laws allowing euthanasia.
    There are many documented cases of abuses in the Oregon model death laws. The problem cases only come to light through media and medical or legal journals, but many are in documents on the Disability Rights Education & Defense Fund website. 

    There is no oversight or assurance provided by the Oregon model death policy that can prevent wrongful deaths due to: 
    1. A wrong diagnosis.
    2. A wrong prognosis. 
    3. When unaware of available treatments.
    4. When there is no access to pain management.
    5. When denied funding for medical treatment.
    6.When the mentally ill are at risk (a huge possibility).
    7. When there is ableist judgement of “better off dead” which is a prevalent medical and social bias.
    8. When there is undetected bullying or coercion.
    9. When there is a killing after changing their mind or while resisting. This is likely in 20 percent of assisted suicides, according to an extrapolation from Oregon statistics.
    10. When the social contagion of suicide is involved (likely in 5-12 percent of cases, as per the Centers for Disease Control). 
    11. When the death is not a rapid or peaceful death (likely 25-72 percent of the the time according to a study by Bill Gallerizzo).
    Bradley Williams
    Care giver and President

Post A Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.