Voluntary assisted dying

  • Voluntary assisted dying involves a process to access medication and to enable a person to legally choose the manner and timing of their death.
  • Put simply, voluntary assisted dying means that some adults could ask for medical help to end their life if they have a disease or illness that is so severe it is going to cause their death and they are suffering badly.
  • The term 'voluntary assisted dying' emphasises the voluntary nature of the choice of the person and their enduring capacity to make this decision.

Voluntary Assisted Dying legislation development

The Voluntary Assisted Dying Bill 2019 has been developed for introduction to Parliament.

If passed, this will allow eligible people at the end of their life access to voluntary assisted dying.

The Bill includes 102 safeguards that are stringent measures to ensure safe and workable legislation.

Voluntary Assisted Dying Bill 2019 (external site)

Voluntary assisted dying final report

The final report of the Ministerial Expert Panel on voluntary assisted dying was tabled in Parliament on June 27, 2019.

The Report has now been considered by the State Government to help guide the drafting of safe, compassionate and Western Australian appropriate legislation. 

Voluntary assisted dying final report (PDF 3MB).

​Voluntary assisted dying final report (Word 3MB).

Why is this being considered for Western Australia?
  • In 2017 a Joint Select Committee on End of Life Choices (the Committee) was established by the Parliament of Western Australia.
  • The Committee undertook an Inquiry into the need for laws in Western Australia (WA) to allow citizens to make informed decisions regarding their own end-of-life choices.
  • The Committee handed down its report My Life, My Choice (the Report) to both Houses of Parliament on 23 August 2018 which outlined 52 findings and made 24 recommendations in relation to end-of-life choices.
  • Unnecessary suffering at end of life, and broad community agreement regarding individual autonomy, formed the basis for the Committee’s recommendation that the Western Australian Government draft and introduce a Bill for Voluntary Assisted Dying.
  • The WA Government considered its response to the Committee's report and instructed the Department of Health and the Department of Justice to implement the Committee’s recommendations relating to VAD, including developing legislation.
  • Consultation has now ended.
  • During March, April and May this year the Ministerial Expert Panel consulted widely.
  • The Discussion Paper aimed to promote discussion and generate suggestions at the metropolitan and regional consultations conducted by the Panel.
  • The experience, knowledge and insights of the community and of experts on particular issues, will help in the development of fully informed and workable legislation, to ensure safe and compassionate processes for voluntary assisted dying.
  • Throughout the consultation period, the Panel listened carefully and respectfully to differing views, comments and suggestions.
  • Feedback provided helped to inform the Panel's final report and recommendations to the Minister for Health.
  • Submissions received by the Panel will be published on this website unless the individual / submitter requested that their submission is not made public.
Ministerial Expert Panel

The Ministerial Expert Panel was established to provide expert advice on the development of voluntary assisted dying legislation.

All information relating to the members, panel updates and related publications can be found on the Ministerial Expert Panel page.


The Discussion Paper and related documents are available in alternative formats below.

Discussion Paper audio files

The Discussion Paper Fact sheet is available in alternative languages on the Ministerial Expert Panel page.


Related links

If reading this information on voluntary assisted dying has raised distressing issues for you the following helplines can be contacted for support:

LifeLine WA 13 11 14 (available 24/7) or online chat www.lifelinewa.org.au 
The Suicide Call Back Service 1300 659 467 (available 24/7) or online chat www.suicidecallbackservice.org.au

Last reviewed: 18-04-2019
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