Health Workers' Choice Debated
More than a dozen states are considering new laws to protect health workers who do not want to provide care that conflicts with their personal beliefs, a surge of legislation that reflects the intensifying tension between asserting individual religious values and defending patients' rights.
About half of the proposals would shield pharmacists who refuse to fill prescriptions for birth control and "morning-after" pills because they believe the drugs cause abortions. But many are far broader measures that would shelter a doctor, nurse, aide, technician or other employee who objects to any therapy. That might include in-vitro fertilization, physician-assisted suicide, embryonic stem cells and perhaps even providing treatment to gays and lesbians.
Maybe it's just me, but when I give the person behind the counter a prescription, I just want a bottle back containing exactly what the scrip says. I don't want lip, I don't want debate, and I sure as hell don't want moralizing. If someone can't do that, it means they shouldn't have gone to work as a pharmacist.