AUGUSTA – A pair of bills would allow Maine doctors to prescribe medication that would hasten a patient’s death.

Republican Sen. Roger Katz’s bill and Democratic Rep. Jennifer Parker’s are both set for a hearing Wednesday.

Both bills would protect health care providers and create a process for patient-directed care for terminally ill adults with limited life expectancy.

Physicians would be able to prescribe a medication that the patient may self-administer to hasten death.

There are a few differences between the bills.

Parker’s bill would also ensure that a physician has counseled a patient about the importance of having another person present when the patient takes the medication to be prescribed.

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