Message from BCCPA and EngAge BC CEO, Terry Lake, on religious exemptions to Medical Assistance in Dying (MAiD)

Dear BCCPA & EngAge BC Members,

I wanted to bring your attention to a recent news story that has once again sparked discussions around the provision of Medical Assistance in Dying (MAiD) in faith-based care settings. The story highlights the experiences of a 34-year-old Vancouver woman with terminal cancer who was transferred from St. Paul’s hospital—operated by Providence Health Care—to another healthcare facility to receive the medically assisted death she had requested.

Since 1995, Providence Health has been signatory to the master agreement signed between the provincial government and faith-based operators, which allows these organizations to opt out of services that conflict with their religious beliefs and values. As a result, when MAiD was legalized in 2016, the existing master’s agreement secured Providence Health Care’s right to opt out of providing these services. However, Minister Adrian Dix has announced that he is in discussions with the leadership at Providence Health, exploring the possibility of voluntary changes to this practice.

While the current media attention focuses on MAiD in acute care settings, BCCPA will continue to closely monitor the situation as it evolves and assess any potential impacts on the senior’s care sector.

Please send your comments, questions or considerations to

Thank you for your attention to this matter.


Terry Lake

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