abortion, Bioethics, conscience, Free Stuff, medical ethics, medicine, morals, politics, professionalism, public policy

>Doctors, Abortion and Conscience

>The debate on medical ethics has definitely moved from “Our Bodies, Our Choice,” to “My Choice, You Don’t Have a Choice.” Autonomy, the “I want” ethics, trumps the right to life, the right to liberty and the physician’s duty to do no harm. Where once laws were written to punish doctors who harmed patients, doctors are now threatened with lawsuits and the loss of our licenses for refusing medications or procedures demanded by patients and their surrogates.

The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists ethics statement, “The Limits of Conscientious Refusal in Reproductive Medicine” is a case in point. Abortion is so important to the ACOG Ethics Committee that they deny the right not to be killed and threaten the right not to be enslaved by calling abortion the “standard reproductive care that patients request” and demands that doctors who “deviate from standard practices” (object to abortion) “practice in proximity to individuals who do not share their views or ensure that referral processes are in place” (with a willing abortionist). The President of ACOG then wrote letters asking Congress for laws to force these limits on our consciences: doctors who object to abortion should either change their practice so that they don’t take care of women and girls or move close to a willing abortionist.

The Christian Medical Association and 28 other pro-life, pro-family organizations have written a letter criticizing ACOG’s Statement as “a profound misunderstanding of the nature and exercise of conscience, an underlying bias against persons of faith and an apparent attempt to disenfranchise physicians who oppose ACOG’s political activism on abortion.”

GrannyGrump posted several reasons conscientious doctors should consider elective intentional abortion bad for the mother. I agree with her that abortion is wrong because it is bad for women. I also believe that she begins from the same viewpoint that I do: Even if abortion weren’t bad for women, it would still be wrong.

Elective intentional abortion is immoral because it takes the life of a human being. If the mother’s life is in danger, she has the right to self preservation and it is moral to help her save her life. Even then, the child’s life should also be protected if at all possible. The intent can never be to produce a dead child.

State officials have mandated that all medical students learn to perform abortions in New York and that all pharmacies stock and dispense contraceptives in Illinois and Washington. ER doctors are forced to dispense Emergency Contraception in Connecticut, California, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Ohio and Washington. How long before autonomy supersedes the physician’s right to conscience at the end of life since the American Medical Association has condoned the use of Oregon’s “Physician Assisted Suicide” law (now renamed and redefined as “Aid in Dying”)?

Laws against the conscience are a poor substitute for medical ethics and will result in the death of those same ethics. The end result of limiting the physician’s conscience is cook book health care written in court rooms by lawyers and judges. The practice of medicine will no longer be a profession, much less a calling, practiced by men and women of conscience. It will become a job done by people capable of following orders, doing what they believe is wrong.

About bnuckols

Conservative Christian Family Doctor, promoting conservative news and views. (Hot Air under the right wing!)

Discussion

4 thoughts on “>Doctors, Abortion and Conscience

  1. >Another example of how the squeaky wheel gets the grease. Slowly but surely the entire "medical" community is restructuring itself to please women who hate babies, just the way society is kowtowing to fanatical Muslims.The more hateful you are, the more people tsk-tsk about how the rest of the world owes it to you to do anything you want, no matter how unreasonable.And YES, I'm comparing militant "prochoicers" to jihadists. Ordinary prochoicers are one thing, just as ordinary Muslims are. But there's a branch of abortion advocacy that is on their own "holy war" and the biggest difference between them and jihadists is that at least the jihadists think they're pleasing Allah, where these abortion fanatics want to please only themselves.

    Posted by GrannyGrump | December 12, 2007, 10:57 pm
  2. >When I delivered babies, we used ACOG paper work and guidelines in order to try to follow the best ("standard") practices and as a defense against lawsuits. We Family doctors were probably more careful than our OB/Gyn colleagues, because of our concerns.Of course, that was the old days – 10 whole years ago – when the "standard reproductive practices" didn't include abortion.I really want to believe that most of the "pro-choicers" believe that they are doing the right thing, no matter how mistaken I believe they are. However, some are "proabortion," not choice – the ethics committee sure doesn't think much of choice.

    Posted by LifeEthics.org | December 12, 2007, 11:25 pm
  3. >Rowe v Wade, abortion aside, gave individuals the right to choose.If doctors choose not to perform abortions, their choice must also be respected. Any law proposed to punish a pro-life doctor is unconstitutional.If safe sex were taught along with abstinence, perhaps fewer abortions would be sought. Sex outside marriage is wrong; however, it isn't going to stop.Also, for some strange reason, insurance companies cover Viagra but not birth control. Could this be a problem? Affordable, accessible birth control. Could this help reduce abortion?Abortion is an abomination, in my opinion; however, so is the lack of care for children born into a life of hunger and poverty.

    Posted by Anonymous | March 21, 2008, 4:45 pm
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