Terminally ill patients might be allowed to take suicide drugs in Colorado

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Voters in Colorado will decide in November whether to pass a bill that would allow suicide through drugs for the terminally ill.

Initiative 145, called “Medical Aid in Dying,” would restrict the drugs to those who are at least 18, have a terminal illness with less than six months to live and are are able to self-administer the medications. Two physicians would have to sign off on the terminal diagnosis, and the patient would have to be mentally competent.

The measure qualified for the November ballot after more than 155,000 registered voters signed petitions, exceeding the threshold by more than 57,000 names.

Colorado would join Oregon, Washington, Vermont and California in having a law that allow end-of-life options for the terminally ill. The Colorado Catholic Conference is among the groups opposed to the measure.

Voters also will weigh in a universal healthcare measure called ColoradoCare and a higher minimum wage.