Letter to the Editor
The Washington Post
4 September, 2008
Reproduced with permission
The misunderstanding expressed in the Aug. 26 letter, “Health Care’s Conscientious Objectors,” illustrates the need for the conscience-protecting regulation recently proposed by the Department of Health and Human Services.
The regulation would implement 35 years of civil rights laws passed by Congress to protect health-care professionals from discrimination, coercion and job loss for adhering to life-affirming ethical standards. The regulation would simply disallow forcing professionals to perform elective abortions and other procedures that violate millennia of medical ethics codes.
Contrary to the letter’s assertion, health-care professionals would continue to care as always for wounded soldiers, AIDS patients, post-abortive teenagers, felons and drunk drivers. In fact, the regulations would protect patient access to the compassionate, conscientious health-care professionals who are among the most dedicated to caring for such individuals.