PORTLAND, Ore. -- A terminally ill woman who moved to Oregon to take advantage of the state's doctor-assisted suicide law announced Thursday she has postponed her planned Saturday death.
"I still feel good enough and I still have enough joy and I still laugh and smile with my family and friends enough that it doesn't seem like the right time right now," she said in a video on her website The Brittany Maynard fund." "But it will come, because I feel myself getting sicker. It's happening each week."
Diagnosed with a malignant brain tumor, Maynard has moved with her family to Oregon so she can legally kill herself with lethal medication prescribed under the Oregon Death With Dignity Act.
She created the fund in her name to further the cause of states enacting doctor-assisted suicide laws.
"When people criticize me for not waiting longer, or, you know, whatever they've decided is best for me, it hurts. Because really, I risk it every day, every day that I wake up," she says in the video.
Maynard has also joined the nonprofit Compassion & Choices, which is advocating for death-with-dignity laws in New Jersey, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Colorado, and California, Inquisitr reports. So far, four states — New Mexico, Vermont, Montana, and Washington — have joined Oregon in passing such laws.
The Oregon Health Authority reports that 122 people were prescribed the end-of-life drugs in 2013 and 71 used them to die. Others mostly died of natural causes. Some are prescribed drugs that are not used in the same calendar year.
Those who died last year ranged in age from 42 to 96 with a median of 71. Most were white, about half having earned baccalaureate degrees. The majority suffered from cancer, the report states. The time from ingestion of the drugs to death ranged from five minutes to 5.6 hours, the report states.
Oregon voters approved the law in 1994 but it was halted by an injunction lifted in October, 1997. A month later, voters rejected a measure that would have repealed the act. Since the implementation of the Oregon Death with Dignity law, 1,173 people have died using the act.
Her planned assisted-suicide again drew rebukes from the Roman Catholic Church, which campaigned heavily against both 1990s measures.
Current Archbishop of Portland Alexander Sample condemned the concept of doctor-assisted suicide in a prepared statement earlier this week.