Thursday, June 13, 2013

Assisted suicide: Senate bill was defeated 

June 09, 2013 9:45 am

I was appalled to read Charles Johnson’s article implying that assisted suicide is legal in Montana. To the contrary, Senate Bill 220, which had sought to legalize assisted-suicide, was defeated in committee during the 2013 legislative session. The bill was tabled, nine votes to three. See

This is in contrast to House Bill 505, which had sought to clarify and strengthen our law against assisted-suicide. HB505 not only got out of committee, but passed the House.

During the legislative session, I was one of 108 physicians who signed a newspaper display ad in support of HB505. My reasons included that the bill would protect my patients, many of whom are elderly.

The current situation is that the fight over assisted suicide will be returning to the courts. For more information, please read this article by Matt Gouras of the Associated Press: “Fight over assisted suicide moves back to court,” May 8, at .

For the sake of my patients and the state of Montana, I hope that assisted suicide will be defeated in this court case once and for all.

Annie Bukacek, Kalispell