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New Mexico

Legal situation

In short

Since April 2021, assisted suicide is, under certain conditions, legal in New Mexico. This is due to the Elizabeth Whitefield End of Life Options ActOn June 18, this act went into effect. Terminally ill New Mexico residents have now the possibility to begin the qualification process to receive aid-in-dying medication. 

Elizabeth Whitefield End of Life Options Act 

The Act is particularly innovative in increasing patient access, and it should be a model for future death with dignity laws:

  • Shorter Waiting Period: Patients in New Mexico only have to wait 48 hours to have their prescription filled for aid-in-dying medication after it is written by their prescribing health care provider. If the health care provider feels a patient will likely die sooner, the waiting period can be waived.

  • Additional Providers: New Mexico is the first state to authorize advanced practice registered nurses and physician assistants to participate as either the prescribing or consulting health care provider, as long as at least one physician is involved in assessing the patient.

  • Hospice Provision: If a patient is already enrolled in hospice, they do not need a consulting health care provider to participate, only a prescribing physician, as they would have already been evaluated by a palliative healthcare team, and deemed terminally ill. 


Right to Die Societies in New Mexico

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