Colorado doctor challenges firing over assisted suicide

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Dr. Barbara Morris is shown outside her home Wednesday, Sept. 4, 2019, in Golden, Colo. Morris has joined forces with her former cancer patient, Neil Mahoney, to say that a Colorado hospital’s policy barring the doctor from administering life-ending drugs to Mahoney at his home goes against the state’s assisted suicide law. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

DENVER  |  A Colorado doctor fired after tying to help a terminally ill man obtain drugs to end his life has filed an updated lawsuit that challenges her firing by a Christian hospital company.

In the case against Centura Health filed Monday, Dr. Barbara Morris alleges it retaliated against her in violation of Colorado’s assisted suicide law and that it unlawfully inserted itself the doctor-patient relationship. Colorado law prohibits corporations from interfering with a physician’s professional judgment.

Morris was fired in August after she and patient Neil Mahoney asked a judge to say whether Centura could stop her from helping him. He has sought help elsewhere and isn’t part of lawsuit anymore.

Centura said Tuesday it’s now only an employment contract case about whether an employer can fire a worker who violates its policies.

However, Morris attorney Jason Spitalnick says it’s about whether Centura’s polices can violate Colorado law.