1975 : Gov. William Millken Signs Bill Defining Death

July 14, 2018 all-day

On July 14, 1975, with little fanfare, Gov. William G. Millikin signed a law that stipulated that death has occurred in Michigan when no brain waves show on encephalgraphs taken twice within a 24-hour period. A group of religious, medical, legal and legislative leaders wrote the law because technological advances had made traditional criteria – heartbeat and lack of breathing – meaningless as physicians using machines can continue those functions almost indefinitely.

Source: Mich-Again’s Day.

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