Press Release Archive

Press Release Archive

Washington Death With Dignity Act - 3/27/2009


On Thursday, March 26, the Harrison Medical Center Board of Directors approved a policy to provide guidance to the organization regarding the Washington Death With Dignity Act that was passed into Washington State law on March 5, 2009. The following excerpt from that policy is what Harrison would like to communicate to the public.

"Harrison Medical Center respects the relationship between the provider and the patient, and has determined from the recent ballot that it is in the community’s best interest to allow its healthcare providers[1] to participate in the Washington Death With Dignity Act, if they so choose.Based on the history of implementation of a similar Act in another state, it is highly unlikely that a provider and patient would choose to participate in the Act within the Medical Center. Harrison Medical Center does not mandate that any provider participate in the Washington Death With Dignity Act, nor does Harrison encourage any provider to do so. Only those providers who are willing and desire to participate should do so.Prescriptions for life-ending medications will not be filled at Harrison.

Harrison Medical Center’s position on the Washington Death with Dignity Act remains neutral, neither supporting nor opposing the option.The Medical Center seeks to make a positive difference in people’s lives through exceptional medical care at all points on the healthcare continuum. We seek to facilitate end-of-life care and provide comfort to our patients when they learn that their lives may be affected by a terminal disease or condition."

We will be informing and guiding our licensed providers regarding their options when acting as an Employee of Harrison, and will work diligently to ensure that we continue to respect and focus on the needs and dignity of our patients, while also honoring the personal and professional preferences of our excellent team of caregivers.

[1] “Health care provider” means a person licensed, certified, or otherwise authorized or permitted by law to administer healthcare or dispense medication in the ordinary course of business or practice of a profession, and includes a health care facility. (RCW 70.245.010(6))