On Thursday, New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham signed an extreme assisted suicide via lethal drugs bill, H.B. 47, into law, which lets medical professionals prescribe lethal drugs to patients who have been diagnosed with a terminal illness that could take their lives anytime up to six months.
“The bill would legalize doctors to prescribe a ‘cocktail’ of lethal drugs to patients suffering from terminal illnesses, which will save insurance companies money,” one report notes.
Life News Reports:
“Dignity in dying — making the clear-eyed choice to prevent suffering at the end of a terminal illness — is a self-evidently humane policy,” Lujan Grisham said, Sight Magazine reports.
But others described the new law as the “worst in the nation,” noting how the elderly and people with disabilities could be coerced into killing themselves.
The law allows a person to request lethal drugs from a doctor, nurse practitioner or physician assistant to commit suicide. Under the law, assisted suicide is supposed to be limited to people who have six months or less to live, though doctors admit that predictions about such things are often wrong.
The New Mexico law only requires people to wait 48 hours to receive the lethal prescription; in most other states where assisted suicide is legal, the waiting period is 15 days, according to the report.
Pro-life advocates, disability rights groups, religious leaders and others united in strong opposition to the law. They said it has very few safeguards to protect vulnerable people who may be contemplating suicide.
“… legalized assisted suicide in any form will only make it even harder for people with disabilities, people of color and the economically disadvantaged to obtain quality medical care,” said Matt Vallière, executive director of the Patients Rights Action Fund.
Vallière said the law allows discrimination against people with disabilities and pushes them toward death rather than medical care.
Catholic leaders in New Mexico, including Santa Fe Archbishop John C. Wester and the New Mexico Conference of Catholic Bishops, who opposed the bill, called it the “worst in the nation.”
“This as we struggle to dissuade our young people from taking their lives when they are struggling with depression and despondency. With these bills, I wonder, what have we become?” Wester said in reference to both the assisted suicide and abortion laws.