Laws that conflict with the practice of medicine: what should health professionals do?
Davis, Dena S.
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A number of states have passed laws that either require physicians to practice bad medicine, or that block them from good medical practice. In addition to anti-abortion laws that require practitioners to give patients inaccurate information, there is also a push by the gun lobby to make it illegal for pediatricians to ask parents if they have guns in the home. A Florida "gag" law to that effect was recently upheld in the 11th Circuit. What should health care providers do when faced with these laws? Is it enough to obey the law and work to overturn the legislation? Are there strategies of circumvention and do they harm the provider/patient relationship? Is civil disobedience ever required, out of loyalty to one's profession and to one's patients?