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website are not a substitute for legal advice provided by a qualified
professional. Commentaries are grouped by national jurisdiction.
Protecting the Careers of Medical Professionals Who
Believe in the Hippocratic Oath
- Wesley J. Smith*
| . . . Opposition to protecting the right of conscience has
suddenly grown so intense that it is easy to foresee
physicians, nurses, and pharmacists who hold to the orthodox
understanding of the Hippocratic Oath being forced out of
medicine altogether . . .
When doctors say No
A law professor defends physicians' right to
- Michael Quinlan*
| As abortion, euthanasia and other controversial
procedures become more widespread, conscientious objection
for healthcare workers is becoming a flashpoint for
controversy throughout the Western world. Some doctors and
ethicists have argued that conscientious objection itself is
unethical because doctors are required to fulfil any legal
request that their patients make. MercatorNet interviewed Professor Michael Quinlan,
dean of the law school at the Sydney campus of the
University of Notre Dame Australia, about this contentious
issue. He has just published an article on the situation in
Growing Intolerance Threatens Rights of Conscience of Health
- Lynn Wardle*
| Around the world, policies and actions of many governments
and governmental agencies are threatening rights of conscience
of health care providers and employees. These challenges
and dangers seem to be increasing.
Recent times have seen numerous high-profile incidents in
which nurses, doctors, hospital staff, government employees, and
other health care workers are being pressured, required and
forced to provide morally-controversial elective procedures
(such as non-therapeutic abortions) despite their expressed
moral objections to participating in such services.
- Michael A. Fragoso*
| . . . conscience itself is not a moral or religious
belief; it is a rational faculty that allows us to apply our religious or
moral beliefs. If professional organizations and governments wish to force
physicians to violate their own consciences, they are not forcing them to
violate their religious tenets or moral beliefs, but rather their very moral
compasses implicit in their rationality. . .
Conscientious Objection as
a 'Crime Against Humanity'
- Sean Murphy*
| . . .Readers of Canadian Health Law and
Policy are to be persuaded that a health care worker who declines, for
reasons of conscience, to direct a patient to the morning after pill or
abortion commits the offence of "forced pregnancy." . . . if . . . not actually a crime against humanity
analogous to torture, . . . at least a gross violation of human rights that
ought to be prosecuted by human rights commissions. . .
Western Defense of Conscience:
Interview With Law Professor Rafael Navarro-Valls
- Zenit | The right to conscientious
objection -- in areas ranging from health care to education
-- is one of the most important legal battles being fought
in the West, according to a law professor and author on the
subject. . .
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