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Missouri having trouble finding anesthesiologist for executions


St. Louis, MO. – Two days after a federal judge ordered Missouri to revamp its execution procedures, the state is realizing it's a huge challenge.

The state Corrections Department can't find a board-certified anesthesiologist to assist in lethal injections. Federal Judge Fernando Gaitan's ruling makes the anesthesiologist's role central in executions.

Corrections Department Director Larry Crawford says anesthesiologists are saying they're wary of crossing an ethical line that could cost them their practice.

Crawford has even solicited help from other states, but says prospects aren't promising.

The head of the American Society of Anesthesiologists says using doctors in executions is misguided and inappropriate.