Timeline: Death With Dignity Act (DWD)

First Oral Request:

Begins the 15-day waiting period; count from following day.

  • Must be a definite request for life-ending medication;
  • Must be recorded in the medical record;
  • Can be made to any physician, as long as the prescribing physician accepts it as valid.

During the 15-day Minimum Waiting Period

(Usually takes longer)…

Prescribing Physician (MD or DO)

  • Certifies eligibility to use the law;
  • Collects Consulting Physician form and client’s Request for Medication form;
  • Writes prescription after 2nd Oral Request and 48-hours after the date on the Request for Medication form;
  • Mails or hand carries prescription to pharmacy.

Consulting Physician (MD or DO)

  • Certifies eligibility to use the law;
  • Sends Consulting Physician form to prescribing physician.

Client (Patient)

  • Completes the Request for Medication form after having seen both physicians; read instructions on form carefully;
  • Submit this form to the Prescribing Physician;
  • Prescription may be written 48-hours after the date on the Request for Medication form: if possible, complete it at least 48 hours before the 2nd oral request, so prescription can be written the day of the 2nd Oral Request.

2nd Oral Request

During the 2nd Oral Request:

  • Made to the prescribing physician at least 15 days after 1st Oral Request;
  • If prescribing physician agrees, 2nd oral request may be made by phone;
  • Prescription can be written the day of the 2nd oral request if the Request for Medication form is dated at least 48 hours before the 2nd Oral Request.

Psychiatric Evaluation

If either physician questions the client’s judgment in making a request for DWD, a psychiatrist of psychologist must ascertain that their patient’s judgment is intact.


  • Prescription can be filled immediately or left at the pharmacy until requested;
  • Prescription expires after six months;
  • Medication must be ordered in advance and is usually available within a few days;
  • Not all pharmacies fill the prescription;
  • Not all pharmacists within a pharmacy participate;
  • Medication prices vary; • Check with your insurance company for coverage;
  • Pharmacist must complete a form that goes to Oregon Health Authority.

The minimum legal time for the DWD process is 15 days. Realistically, it can take up to four to six weeks to complete.


For Your Records

Be sure to retain the following:

  • Name of prescribing physician
  • Name of consulting physician
  • Date of 1st verbal request
  • Date of 2nd verbal request
  • Date Request for Medication form signed and witnessed

Life Insurance Benefits

Benefits are not affected by using Oregon’s DWDA. The death certificate indicate that the death is due to the underlying illness.

EOLCOR Client Services Packet

updated 12/2016

Download PDF

“It’s overwhelmingly complicated for a patient to navigate the details of the DWD law.  It’s almost prohibitive without somebody like you [EOLCOR]. I’ve wanted to do this since my diagnosis almost a year and half ago. I couldn’t even think of having to collect all the details that are required. Now I can do that with your help.  Thank you.”