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  • Public Debate on Doctor Assisted Suicide

Public Debate on Doctor Assisted Suicide

  • 09/03/2015
  • 6:00 PM - 7:30 PM
The issue of physician assisted suicide, or what proponents prefer to call physician aid in dying, is back in the forefront of public policy debates in California. Although California Senate Bill 128, a legislative proposal to legalize this practice for terminally ill patients, was recently pulled from a vote in the Assembly Health Committee, there remain pending court cases on this issue in California, and proponents are prepared to introduce a statewide ballot initiative to legalize assisted suicide.


Erwin Chemerinsky
Dean and Distinguished Professor of LawRaymond Pryke Professor of First Amendment Law
UC Irvine School of Law


Aaron Kheriaty
Associate Clinical Professor of Psychiatry
Director, Program in Medical Ethics
UC Irvine School of Medicine

Provost staff headshot Steve Zylius/UC Irvine Communications

Moderator: Douglas Haynes
Director Medical Humanities
Professor of History

About the Presenters:

Erwin Chemerinsky, JD, is the founding Dean and Distinguished Professor of Law, and Raymond Pryke Professor of First Amendment Law at UC Irvine School of Law, with a joint appointment in Political Science.  Prior to assuming this position in 2008, he was the Alston and Bird Professor of Law and Political Science at Duke University from 2004-2008, and before that was a professor at the University of Southern California Law School from 1983-2004, including as the Sydney M. Irmas Professor of Public Interest Law, Legal Ethics, and Political Science.

He is the author of eight books, including The Case Against the Supreme Court, published by Viking in 2014, and more than 200 law review articles. He frequently argues appellate cases, including in the United States Supreme Court.  Dean Chemerinsky is a graduate of Northwestern University and Harvard Law School.  In 2014, National Jurist magazine named Dean Chemerinsky as the most influential person in legal education in the United States.

Aaron Kheriaty, MD, is an Associate Professor of Psychiatry and Director of the Program in Medical Ethics at the University of California Irvine School of Medicine, where he also serves as chairman of the clinical ethics committee at UCI Medical Center. Dr. Kheriaty graduated from the University of Notre Dame in philosophy and pre-medical sciences, and earned his MD degree from Georgetown University.He is the author of several books and articles for professional and lay audiences on bioethics, social science, and psychiatry.

On the issue of doctor assisted suicide, he has published articles in the Wall Street Journal, the Orange County Register, and First Things, and has conducted print, radio, and interviews on CNN, NPR, NBC, CBS, Fox, and Fusion. Dr. Kheriaty was invited to speak on California Senate Bill 128 to the California Medical Association and the UC Center in Sacramento. He testified before the California Senate Health Committee against SB 128, and his work was cited on the California Senate floor during the debates.

Douglas M. Haynes, Phd, is a Professor of History who specializes in biomedical discovery, comparative health care systems, and the image of illness and disease in the mass media. He also directs the UCI Medical Humanities Initiative, an unprecedented collaboration among the schools of arts, humanities and medicine to advance the human understanding of health, healing and wellbeing.

NOTE:  This debate has reached maximum occupancy, however, you may RSVP to receive a link that will allow you to LIVESTREAM the event. Click the link below to be redirected to the UCI event announcement, then click on RSVP TO VIEW LIVESTREAM.


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