Doctor lobby seen as hurdle in push for NY assisted suicide bill

A push to legalize physician-assisted suicide for terminally ill New Yorkers is running into staunch opposition from the lobby for doctors, Roman Catholic bishops and those saying the state does too little to support hospice programs.

The advocates for ending the Penal Law prohibition against “aid in dying” argue New York has fallen behind seven other states and the District of Columbia, where doctors are allowed to assist in the deaths of patients who have certified they no longer wish to live.

But Dr. Thomas Madjeski of Medina, president of the Medical Society of the State of New York, urged lawmakers at a hearing Monday to keep in place the legal barrier that makes assisted suicide a crime in New York.

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