http://www.catholicnewsagency.com/images/size340/Medication_Credit_ashley_rose_via_Flickr_CC_BY_NC_ND_20_CNA_2_2_15_pills.jpgOakland, Calif., Jul 14, 2016 / 03:24 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- You can’t put a price on most things in life. But you can, apparently, put a price on death - $2,000.
That’s what Dr. Lonny Shavelson is charging patients at his brand-new physician-assisted suicide clinic in Berkeley, California.
Last month, California became the fifth and most populous state to adopt a law legalizing physician-assisted suicide. The state’s End of Life Option Act went into effect June 9.
Shavelson, who had retired from practicing medicine, was drawn back after Calif. Governor Jerry Brown signed the End of Life Option Act last year. Shavelson recently opened the state’s first End of Life Options clinic in the Bay Area, where he will consult with and provide lethal prescriptions for patients who request them – and who may not be given the prescription by other doctors who refuse to write such prescriptions.
Under the California law, two doctors must agree that a mentally competent patient has six months or fewer to live. The patient then agrees in writing to administer the lethal prescription themselves. Currently, the law does not mandate doctors to provide lethal prescriptions if they choose not to do so.
Shavelson’s sudden reappearance in medicine and his past advocacy for assisted suicide has left many critics sceptical of his motivations.
“I think that what we have said about assisted suicide is predictably happening, which is [that] some individuals in the healthcare industry will take advantage (of these laws) and see this as a business opportunity, and take advantage of people and families at their most vulnerable time,” Tim Rosales, political director for the Patients Rights Action Fund, told CNA.
One of Shavelson’s most vocal critics is Wesley Smith, a lawyer, author, and a senior fellow at the Discovery Institute’s Center on Human Exceptionalism.