Death is unavoidable for all of us, although most states do not allow the legal means to end one's life on their own terms when faced with a terminal illness. There is some confusion over the terms euthanasia and physician-assisted suicide, as the former relates to actively taking someone's life as an act of mercy while the latter involves the prescribing of lethal drugs for self-administration. While euthanasia is illegal in all states, a few allow physician-assisted suicide in certain situations through "death with dignity" laws. In the absence of these laws, terminally ill patients may still forego life-preserving treatments such as feeding tubes if indicated in a living will.
The right to end one's own life is a very divisive issue, often pitting patients' rights groups against those who oppose any kind of act that takes another's life. Even some doctor's oppose euthanasia or assisted suicide because of perceived violations of the Hippocratic Oath (i.e. "do no harm").
Euthanasia and Physician-Assisted Suicide in Idaho at a Glance
Idaho is part of the majority of U.S. states that prohibits assisted suicide, although health care directives and living wills allow for the natural process of dying.
Additional details of physician-assisted suicide and euthanasia laws in Idaho are listed below.
|Euthanasia Condoned in Statutes?||Does not make legal or condone mercy killing, euthanasia, or assisted suicide|
|Effect of Withholding of Life-Sustaining Procedures||39-4510 Patients may decline life-sustaining procedures (such as artificial respiration and feeding tubes) through a health care directive or living will, thus allowing the natural process of death to occur without subjecting medical personnel or hospitals to liability.|
Note: State laws may change at any time through the enactment of newly signed legislation or voter-approved ballot initiatives, decisions from higher courts, or other means. While we strive to ensure the accuracy of these pages, you may also want to contact an Idaho health care law attorney or conduct your own legal research to verify the state law(s) you are researching.
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Idaho Assisted Suicide and Euthanasia Laws: Related Resources
Contact a qualified attorney.