Colorado Medical Society

Board directs CMS to develop and distribute “End-of-Life Act” education to members

Tuesday, November 22, 2016 09:30 AM

The CMS Board of Directors approved a measure at their Nov. 18 meeting to educate physicians on the newly passed Proposition 106, the “Colorado End-of-Life Options Act,” which allows individuals with a terminal illness to request from their physician and self-administer medical aid-in-dying medication.

CMS will develop timely and accurate peer and legal-reviewed materials to educate physicians on the new law while carefully listening to and considering member concerns and recommendations. The CMS Council on Ethical and Judicial Affairs (CEJA) will lead this effort. Council members will:

  1. Approve member educational materials;
  2. Evaluate members’ concerns and make recommendations to strengthen physician and patient protections as needed and appropriate;
  3. Work with the Colorado Medical Board and/or other state agencies on any guidelines that may be required as a result of the law’s passage;
  4. Coordinate closely with interested component societies for the purpose of assisting them with their work with local end-of-life grassroots initiatives; and
  5. Maintain an ongoing assessment of the act’s impact on physicians and patients.

The board voted on Sept. 16 to take a neutral public stance on Proposition 106, recognizing the strongly held and divergent views of CMS members regarding end-of-life assistance. This decision was preceded by an in-depth analysis of medical aid in dying, as well as review by and advice from CEJA, an all-member survey, and a review of and change in CMS policy.