Colorado’s aid-in-dying law in disarray as big Catholic health systems opt out

Nearly one-third of Colorado’s hospitals are refusing to offer terminally ill patients the option of physician-assisted suicide — even though voters last fall overwhelmingly approved a ballot initiative legalizing the practice.

And two of the state’s biggest health care systems, both faith-based, appear poised to bar their doctors from providing such services to patients at any of their facilities, under any circumstances — potentially running afoul of the new aid-in-dying law.

The Catholic Church strongly opposes assisted suicide and the Archdiocese of Denver spent $1.6 million campaigning against the Colorado measure. That effort failed, but faith-based health systems are now leading resistance on the ground.

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