Nearly 600 terminally ill Californians received drugs under the state's aid-in-dying law in 2017, according to data released Friday by the California Department of Public Health.
Since June 2016, California's End of Life Option Act has allowed certain terminally ill patients to request lethal medication. Of the 632 Californians who requested the drugs in 2017:
- 577 received a prescription
- 363 took the medication and died
- 86 died without taking the drugs
The state doesn't know what happened to the rest of the recipients.
The law has been on shaky ground since a Riverside County judge tossed it this spring, citing concerns that it was passed unconstitutionally during a special session. A state appeals court has temporarily reinstated the law.