New York Appeals Court Delivers Major Ruling on Doctor Assisted Suicide


The New York Court of Appeals has upheld the Empire State’s ban on physician assisted suicide, a ruling that is being celebrated by pro-life groups.

The plaintiffs appealed to the New York courts for a constitutional right that would permit doctors to prescribe lethal doses of drugs to a mentally competent and terminally ill patient.

The high court, in a 5-0 decision, sided with lower court rulings that blocked the effort.

“Plaintiffs initially assert that we should interpret the assisted suicide statutes to exclude physicians who provide aid-in-dying. Such a reading would run counter to our fundamental tenets of statutory construction, and would require that we read into the statute words and meaning wholly absent from their text,’’ Judge Jenny Rivera wrote in the lead decision. Two of the five judges also wrote concurring decisions and two judges on the seven-member panel did not take participate in the case.

“Aid-in-dying falls squarely within the ordinary meaning of the statutory prohibition on assisting a suicide,’’ the decision stated. “The assisted suicide statutes apply to anyone who assists an attempted or completed suicide. There are no exceptions,’’ the court added.


The lawsuit challenging the law was filed by three terminally ill patients from New York City and their doctors. Two of the patients have already passed away.

Physician assisted suicide is a frightening concept given that doctors take an oath to “do no harm.” A doctor taking action that is intentionally meant to kill the patient crosses a line that should not be crossed.


Join the conversation as a VIP Member

Trending on RedState Videos