Montana House of Representatives Considers Penalizing Doctors and Caregivers Participating in Assisted Suicide.

Representative Krayton Kerns (R), Chairman of Montana’s House Judiciary Committee, has sponsored a bill that would penalize doctors and caregivers who participate in assisted suicide.  The bill is intended to reduce potential elder abuse while maintaining “the integrity of the medical profession.”  Supporters of the bill believe assisted suicide is unnecessary in light of palliative care, whereas opponents believe the bill will limit the personal autonomy of people struggling with terminal and other devastating illnesses.  The issue of assisted suicide in Montana gained much attention after the Montana Supreme Court ruled in 2009 that state law did not prohibit the practice.  

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