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End-of-life care bill advances in assembly.

Byline: Jessica Perry

Under new legislation sponsored by Assemblywoman Nancy Munoz, R-21st District, people nearing the end of their lives will have more control of their care.

The legislation, Senate Bill 1109 / Assembly Bill 2144, allowing physician assistants to sign and modify physician orders for life-sustaining treatment forms was approved on Thursday by the Assembly Health and Senior Services Committee.

"End of life care is a very personal concern," said Munoz in a statement. "These can be the some of the most difficult decisions of a patient's life."

The form would allow patients to state in their own words that their wishes are for end-of-life care. The form then becomes a medical order that must be followed by all providers.

The decisions include whether to attempt resuscitation, administer IV fluids, use intubation and mechanical ventilation, and provide nutrition.

Currently, the forms must be signed by a physician or advanced practice nurse to be valid. This bill expands the number of providers who may sign the form. Munoz's bill requires physician assistants to complete two credits of continuing education on topics concerning end-of-life care.

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Title Annotation:New Jersey General Assembly
Author:Perry, Jessica
Publication:NJ Biz
Article Type:Brief article
Geographic Code:1U2NJ
Date:Mar 7, 2019
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