Death with dignity bill moves forward in Augusta

AUGUSTA, Maine (AP) - A death with dignity bill is advancing through the Maine Legislature, but will face a likely veto from the Republican governor.

The Senate narrowly voted 16-15 Thursday to support Republican Sen. Roger Katz's bill.

Gov. Paul LePage has said he'll veto the legislation, which would allow doctors to prescribe medication that a patient may self-administer to hasten death.

A Senate amendment would require physicians to discuss with patients whether they feel unduly influenced.

The Maine Medical Association has said its members are divided on the bill.

Opponents say the bills would spur elder abuse and exploitation.

Supporters say the legislation protects against such abuse and that medications cannot treat all pain.

The nonprofit Death with Dignity Political Fund says two dozen states are considering similar bills this year.

© 2017 Associated Press


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