Medical Assistance in Dying (MAID)


Bill C-14 received royal assent and became law on June 17, 2016. Bill C-14 is available here .

Medical Assistance in Dying

Updated April 7, 2017

What is the Carter Decision?

On February 6th, 2015, the Supreme Court of Canada struck down the law prohibiting physician-assisted dying for competent adults who have a grievous and irremediable medical condition that causes enduring suffering. The decision was to come into effect on February 6th, 2016.  In January the Attorney General of Canada applied for a six-month extension to make necessary legislative changes. A four-month extension was granted and the decision was to come into effect June 6th, 2016. 

Bill C-14, an Act to amend the Criminal Code and to make related amendments to other Acts (medical assistance in dying) received Royal Assent June 17th, 2016 after being passed by both the House of Commons and the Senate. Click here for a copy of Bill C-14

What does this decision mean for practicing RNs and NPs?

Amendments to Bill C -14 allow nurse practitioners as well as physicians to provide this service. RNs and other health-care providers are permitted to assist physicians or nurse practitioners in medical assistance in dying without risk of criminal charges.  

What is currently happening?

RNANT/NU encourages you to read the post “Medical Assistance in Dying: What Every Nurse Should Know” on the Canadian Nurses Protective Society (CNPS) website at , Bill C-14 posted above and the Frequently Asked Question posted below. For example, a question might be the criminal code identifies an important limitation that the RN/NP needs to be aware of. What is that limitation? Read more here


For answers to some Frequently Asked Questions about MAID for RNs and NPs, click here

Revised Medical Assistance in Dying Interim Guidelines for the Northwest Territories is available here (updated June 29, 2016).

More information from CNPS regarding MAID is available here

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