This is the fourth report from the independent Voluntary Assisted Dying Review Board.
It details activity under the Voluntary Assisted Dying Act 2017 from 1 July to 31 December 2020.
The report shows that since June 2019 (when the Act commenced):
- 581 people have been assessed for eligibility to access voluntary assisted dying
- 465 permit applications have been made
- 405 permits have been issued
- 224 people have died from taking the prescribed medications.
The report provides details about who is accessing voluntary assisted dying:
- applicants were aged between 20 and 100 years and the average age was 71
- 47 per cent of applicants were female
- 36 per cent of applicants were from regional Victoria
- 87 per cent were living in their own home at the time of the application
- the care navigators supported 1059 people seeking information
- 67 per cent administered the medication themselves
- 77 per cent had a malignancy diagnosis, such as lung, breast or gastrointestinal cancer
- 23 per cent had a non-malignant diagnosis, with 62 per cent of this group having a neurodegenerative disease
The independent Voluntary Assisted Dying Review Board plays an important role in assuring the community and health practitioners that voluntary assisted dying is closely and independently monitored and reviewed.