Infographic: Canada’s new medical assistance in dying (MAID) law

Infographic: Canada’s new medical assistance in dying (MAID) law
Long description

Canada’s new medical assistance in dying law

On March 17, 2021, changes to Canada’s new medical assistance in dying (MAID) law came into force. This marks a significant milestone for Canada. The new law responds to feedback from over 300,000 Canadians, experts, practitioners, stakeholders, Indigenous groups, and provinces and territories, provided during the January and February 2020 consultations. The revised law is also informed by the testimony of over 120 expert witnesses heard throughout Bill C-7’s study by the House of Commons and the Senate.

These changes to the Criminal Code now allow MAID for eligible persons who wish to pursue a medically assisted death, whether their natural death is reasonably foreseeable or not. The new law will reduce unnecessary suffering in Canada. It also supports greater autonomy and freedom of choice for eligible persons, and provides safeguards to protect those who may be vulnerable.

Original MAID legislation 2016 New MAID law (came into force on March 17, 2021)
Request for MAID Request for MAID
Eligibility criteria
  • Have a grievous and irremediable medical condition
  • Natural death must be reasonably foreseeable
Eligibility criteria
  • Have a grievous and irremediable medical condition
  • "Reasonable foreseeability of natural death" criterion repealed
  • Eligibility for persons suffering solely from mental illness is temporarily excluded until March 17, 2023 (Expert review will make recommendation on protocols, guidance and safeguards for persons suffering from mental illness by March 17, 2022)
Safeguards for all eligible persons Existing & eased safeguards for eligible persons whose death is reasonably foreseeable New & strengthened safeguards for eligible persons whose death is not reasonably foreseeable
Final consent to be provided before administration of MAID Final consent or possible waiver of final consent for eligible persons under certain circumstances Final consent to be provided before administration of MAID

Medical Assistance in Dying

To support health care practitioners and sustain pan-Canadian cooperation on the implementation of the new MAID law, the Government of Canada will continue to work with provinces and territories, health care practitioners and regulatory bodies on best practices, clinical guidance, training, monitoring and reporting.

For more detailed information on the changes to Canada’s MAID law that came into force on March 17, 2021, please consult the Medical assistance in dying webpage on justice.gc.ca

Date modified: