Now that the Obama administration is about to repeal the "right of conscience" rule, which was a thinly veiled last-minute attempt by the Bush administration to withhold healthcare in abortion and birth control and so broadly worded so as to sidestep controversy over reproductive healthcare (not that it worked), I hope they don't get cold feet. Certain religious groups are now trying to convince the Obama administration not to repeal the rule.
If the rule doesn't get repealed, I fear we will see ridiculous cases like a doctor letting a woman in his care die for lack of CPR because "it's against his religious beliefs to touch women". This might be an extreme example, but it's not as if similar things are not already happening. And a broad right of conscience rule for healthcare means that there would be no consequences for withholding healthcare when it should be reasonably expected, even in life-threatening situations.
Stochastic scribble of the day:
There are only three types of medicine: medicine that have been shown to work, medicine that has yet to be tested, and medicine that have failed to show any efficacy. Mainstream medicine only really cares about the first category; there's a reason why most complementary and alternative "medicine" is not mainstream.
The Friendly Atheist mentions yet another case of someone dying from an easily treatable condition because they chose to rely on faith instead of modern medicine. It's one thing to refuse an uncertain and dangerous medical treatment, but choosing wishful thinking over proven medical treatments is just stupid, even if it pains me to say so. And if inflicted on someone else, it should indeed be considered criminal.
People should realize that when reality and pure wishful thinking collide, reality is always going to prevail.
I've been reading Steven Johnson's The Ghost Map. One thing that struck me was how important our modern evidence-based medicine is, and how the cacophony of pseudo-scientific medicine can all but drown out actual cures that work.
Continue reading Drowning real cures among quack cures