UK: Conscience clause removed for student gynaecologists and obstetricians

Publié le : 5 May 2014

 In the United Kingdom, the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists has just banned doctors and nurses who refuse to prescribe or administer contraceptives to their patients, from qualifying. Moreover, students who exercise their conscience clause will not be awarded their diploma even if they complete the rest of their course. 

According to the directives, “completion of the course (theoretical and practical aspects) means that students will be instructed during training to prescribe all forms of hormonal contraceptives, including emergency contraception, and to advise on and prescribe other intra-uterine methods, if required. If candidates do not complete their course, they cannot be awarded the FSRH [Faculty of Sexual & Reproductive Healthcare] diploma“. 

As far as David Jones, Director of the Anscombe Bioethics Centre in Oxford is concerned, this regulation is “an unfair form of discrimination against professionals based on their personal beliefs. It also discriminates indirectly against patients who share the same beliefs and who may wish to be treated by professionals who understand and are mindful of their position“. 

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