Act 39 was passed by Vermont General Assembly in 2013, and signed into law on May 20, 2013.
The Patient Choice and Control at End of Life Act (Act 39) provides Vermont residents with terminal disease the option to be prescribed a dose of medication to hasten the end of their life. This option requires the participation of a Vermont physician.
For the three years to May 2016, physicians and patients must adhere to a process laid out by the Act. In 2016, that process sunsets but the law continues to provide immunity for patients and physicians who wish to take steps under the Act. No patient, physician, or pharmacist may be required to participate in activities under Act 39. Every step must be voluntary.