Physicians will be allowed to refuse abortion and sex change operations on religious grounds
To help doctors, nurses and other staff of medical institutions in this controversial issue will be a special unit on conscience and religious freedom, which will be created in the Department of Health and Social Services.
Advocates for women’s rights and LGBT communities, as well as a group of medical professionals, expressed concern that such a decision would exacerbate discrimination against vulnerable groups and inequalities in health. Even before the official statement on the innovation scheduled for January 18, several human rights organizations have promised to challenge it.
“By experience, we know that denial of treatment discredits medical assistance,” said vice-president of family planning Dana Singzir.
Obstetrician-gynecologist from Chicago Ben Brown, a member of the movement “Physicians for Reproductive Health”, is convinced that the new rule of the presidential administration is contrary to the oath brought by medical workers.
In 2009, Filipino native Cathy Chenzon-De Carlo, working as a nurse at the Mount Sinai Hospital in New York, refused to participate in the abortion at a later date. Cathy asked for a replacement, but was refused. The management of the hospital said that the patient suffers from pre-eclampsia and can die without surgery.
According to the nurse, after participating in the abortion, she began nightmares. The woman decided to sue the hospital, but her complaint was declined. In 2013, Mount Sinai revised its policy.
The conscience and religious freedom unit will protect just such health workers as Cathy Chenzon-De Carlo, said Malory Quigley, director of communications for the non-profit organization Susan B. Anthony List.
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