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Monday, August 04, 2008



The best analogy I've seen for this is that any Jewish person who applied to work at McDonald's, went through the training, and refused to serve cheeseburgers to customers (and in some cases, refused to let them go to another fast food place) would be fired immediately. A Mormon who applied to work at Starbucks, went through training, and denied customers anything with caffeine would be fired.

So why do we let doctors and pharmacists refuse to do their jobs?


Very good post. We as health "consumers" should be fully aware of the services provided. And if we must fully disclose our personal information, then doctors should fully disclose their biases. INFORMED CONSENT.


Thanks. I'll seek out those who DO post this sign on their door and GIVE THEM my business, my money, and my trust to provide my family's health care needs. Strangely enough, I actually PREFER not to have hitmen touching my body and the bodies of my children.


You don't have to personally perform each procedure to still be offering your patients quality medical care. The suggested sign starts with not believing in abortions at all, which clearly doesn't describe you, so no need to get defensive.


When I moved to my new home, my GP gave me a list of recommended ob/gyn doctors from which I could choose a provider. I was shocked when I telephoned the first one on the list and was told, after I explained that I wanted an appointment for my annual pap and a refill of my bc pill prescription, that "this is a life office, and the doctor does not prescribe contraception." When I mentioned to my GP that this person was on her list, she said that she feels as though she has to list a selection of ob/gyns with a "wide range" of beliefs so that her patients can select the doctor that best fits them. I told her I was disappointed that her office recommended someone whose beliefs were so antithetical to women's basic health rights, and she agreed to discuss the issue at a meeting of the practice's members. Alas, that ob/gyn doctor is still listed on their recommendation sheet, and I am searching for a new GP.


I think this is an excellent idea! This will work well both for people who seek these services, and for people who don't want their medical treatment performed at the hands of someone they view as a murderer. It also spares the health professionals from having to make explanations that take time and risk leaving the patient feeling humiliated.


You're missing the checkbox that says "I believe in Plan B and/or birth control pills, but only in some circumstances. Therefore, I will subject you to a potentially upsetting barrage of personal questions before deciding whether or not to dispense your medication."

Possibly followed by a sub-item: "I get off on your humiliation."


StudentDoc, there's still a lot you can do for abortion rights. Vote to grant hospital admitting privileges for an abortion doc. Support the policy of allowing medical underlings to do first-trimester abortions, which is the wave of the future--as a pretty well-educated medicine-watcher with a long-standing interest in abortion I predict that ten years from now the majority of abortions in the USA will be done by non-MDs. Physicians' assistants have been doing suction curettage in Vermont since the 1970s and no one's ever observed any significant difference between their complication rates and the physicians'. Watch how it plays out in Arizona. Last I heard the Governor vetoed a bill that would have restricted abortions to MDs.

Student Doctor

As a medical student, I am saddened by the oversimplification here. I intend to go into Ob-Gyn as my profession and I very much support a woman's right to birth control, emergency contraception, and abortion. Indeed, I visit this blog to see positive depictions of abortion, as they are so rare in this society. However, I will not be performing abortions (though I would support any of my patients in making that decision and make a referral if requested). I am tortured by the fact that supporting abortion but not providing the service makes me a hypocrite, but the checklist above would simply lump me in with the right-wing religious zealots.

Why will I not be performing abortions? Fear. I'm not willing to put my family through the threats and possible violence that come with performing abortions. I know that this makes me weak, but I'm not the bad guy. The villains are the attitudes and people responsible for that environment of fear that keeps providers like myself too afraid to act.

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