Should Doctors be Allowed to Refuse Treatment if Parents Won’t Vaccinate? - Mothering Forums

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Old 09-29-2012, 06:57 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Should Doctors be Allowed to Refuse Treatment if Parents Won’t Vaccinate?
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Old 09-29-2012, 07:09 PM
 
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Simply put:

 

                            **  NO  **
 


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Old 09-29-2012, 07:18 PM
 
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IMO? Yes. There is no "right" to be treated by a particular doctor. The patient should then find a physician who holds the same beliefs that s/he does.
 

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Old 09-29-2012, 07:25 PM
 
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I agree with mtiger. I don't like the idea of forcing someone to do something that makes him/her uncomfortable.


 
 
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Old 09-29-2012, 07:35 PM
 
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Absolutely. Doctors are private citizens running private businesses and should be left alone to accept only those patients they feel comfortable treating. 

 

And that poll is useless. The only 'yes' answer was for those who are pro-vax.

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Old 09-29-2012, 08:22 PM
 
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Yes, except for emergencies -- a family doctor should be able to terminate a patient relationship, but an ER doctor shouldn't be able to refuse to set a broken leg.


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Old 09-29-2012, 08:34 PM
 
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Doctors terminate patient relationships for a host of reasons, including failure to follow a care plan repeatedly, failure to show (or show on time) for appointments, etc. Doctors should not be required to see a specific patient. As a writer, I can write for people and then choose to reject any future assignments if the working relationship wasn't a good fit. I would hate to think of being required to do so just because I'd once accepted work.


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Old 09-29-2012, 08:41 PM
 
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Yes, if they have a private practice. Doctors go to medial school and spend years of their lives studying and practicing before becoming a paid doctor. Why should they have any less of a choice about their clientele than lawyers, accountants, or psychologists? 

 

In emergencies, or in small towns where there are no other options, I can see there being exceptions, but for the most part I think doctors should be able to choose who they see. 


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Old 09-29-2012, 09:50 PM
 
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What if you substituted some other invasive, unnecessary, and risky medical procedure for vaccines, and then asked the same question?

Should doctors be allowed to refuse treatment if parents refuse to let them remove a healthy child's tonsils?

 

Let's remember that it wasn't too long ago that doctors routinely removed children's tonsils.

 

Women with depression were often treated by being given a hysterectomy.

 

Wisdom teeth are still surgically removed "before they cause problems."

 

Yep, modern medicine is certainly consistent.

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Old 09-29-2012, 10:32 PM
 
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Yes, unless it is an emergency.

 

Doctor routinely fire non compliant patients. 

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Old 09-29-2012, 11:08 PM
 
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Yes, except for emergency situations. 


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Old 09-30-2012, 02:11 AM
 
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I think no actually. Although I think it's reasonable to segregate them from the normal well child check waiting rooms.

For me the pro argument would be about trust. If you dont trust your doctor to have your best interests at heart, and you can't come to agreement over treatment/preventative measures, then there's probably a deeper problem. I can potentially agree with a doctor refusing to continue to treat someone who repeatedly rejects their medical advice..... But thats bigger than just refusing vaccines.

Of course this is a real concern of privilege too. Many people have no choice over a doctor who could/would treat them.

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Old 09-30-2012, 02:54 AM
 
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No. Just like I also think that pharmacists should not be able to refuse to dispense contraceptives, etc, because they have a personal objection.

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Old 09-30-2012, 09:18 AM
 
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Yes doctors should be able to refuse to treat patients who they don't feel will benefit from their care due to incompatible beliefs and refusal to follow treatment plans, including refusal to vaccinate. They are a private business and they do have a lot of choice over who they see. Many doctors also refuse to see more than a certain number of patients and refuse to accept patients without insurance unless they have cash upfront so there is not really an expectation that the doctor you pick will also pick you. Doctors In an emergency a doctor shouldn't be able to refuse care in the er but I think that is already a law if I remember correctly.

I agree that pharmacists shouldn't have a right to refuse to fill a medication though. Refusing to give prescribed medication isn't something I see as a long standing right whereas refusal to continue to treat a patient in the first place is.
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Old 09-30-2012, 09:24 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Adaline'sMama View Post

Yes, if they have a private practice. Doctors go to medial school and spend years of their lives studying and practicing before becoming a paid doctor. Why should they have any less of a choice about their clientele than lawyers, accountants, or psychologists? 

 

In emergencies, or in small towns where there are no other options, I can see there being exceptions, but for the most part I think doctors should be able to choose who they see. 

 

 

I agree with all of this.

 

 

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No. Just like I also think that pharmacists should not be able to refuse to dispense contraceptives, etc, because they have a personal objection.

I disagree with this if it is a private practice.  Our state went round and round with this recently regarding a pharmacy in Olympia.  In the end, they made legislation that supported the pharmacist's objections, but required pharmacists to refer clients to a pharmacy that could help them. 

 

I don't think the two are the perfect comparison.  One is refusing a patient because they have a prescription for a medication (usually the morning-after pill) that they disagree with and won't carry.  The other is refusing a patient because the parents refused treatment the physician thinks is necessary.  

 

Regardless, those in the medical profession are not entirely public servants.  Some are, others aren't.  If they aren't they should be able to make those calls according to their conscience and professional opinion.


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Old 09-30-2012, 09:41 AM
 
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Yes, except for emergencies -- a family doctor should be able to terminate a patient relationship, but an ER doctor shouldn't be able to refuse to set a broken leg.
I agree with this if we add another caveat: if there isn't another doctor within 20 miles or so, then the doctor should not refuse patients on the basis of vax status.
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Old 09-30-2012, 10:02 AM - Thread Starter
 
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i'm just wondering when the Hippocratic Oath added that vaccine status must be up to date in order for an md to treat someone......

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Old 09-30-2012, 10:09 AM
 
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I think there is a difference between offering assistance to someone with an acute need and offering well-patient care.  I also think it is different when there are no other options in the area.  In remote areas, even a private practice doctor becomes a de facto public servant and should make decisions accordingly.

 

But I get the frustration.  I got some heat when I took my dd to the emergency room at Children's Hospital and was curtly informed that because I refused the flu vaccine, my otherwise on-schedule dd was not "up to date".  I can only imagine how that visit skewed the statistics.....  I'm not even sure what that had to do with why we were there.  And I do consider myself lucky that our girls' PCP is so open and understanding now that I have refused their booster shots.


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Old 09-30-2012, 11:11 AM
 
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No.  Where I live, doctors are paid for with my taxes.  I am not Ok with them refusing service for some Canadians when all Canadians pay for healthcare.

 

I also do worry about children being left without healthcare.  Who wants that?  There have been threads on here where posters complain that all the doctors in  a reasonable distance will not accept non-vaxxers.  It can leave children without care for what is their parents decision.  Vaccines are only a small part of healthcare - to refuse to see kids based on this one aspect seem punitive to me.  I wonder if they also refuse to see kids whose parents smoke, kids who live on twinkie diets, etc?  I sincerely doubt it.  In my mind it is a form of discrimination to refuse to see some people over their health choices - yet are willing to see others on health choices that are often worse, but not as controversial and media driven.


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Old 09-30-2012, 11:21 AM
 
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No.  Where I live, doctors are paid for with my taxes.  I am not Ok with them refusing service for some Canadians when all Canadians pay for healthcare.

 

I also do worry about children being left without healthcare.  Who wants that?  There have been threads on here where posters complain that all the doctors in  a reasonable distance will not accept non-vaxxers.  It can leave children without care for what is their parents decision.  Vaccines are only a small part of healthcare - to refuse to see kids based on this one aspect seem punitive to me.  I wonder if they also refuse to see kids whose parents smoke, kids who live on twinkie diets, etc?  I sincerely doubt it.  In my mind it is a form of discrimination to refuse to see some people over their health choices - yet are willing to see others on health choices that are often worse, but not as controversial and media driven.

That makes sense.

 

 

 

 

There are no doctors within about 40 miles that will accept unvaxxed children, aside from public health clinics. I have to drive my kid almost an hour to her (awesome) ped. 


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Old 09-30-2012, 01:27 PM
 
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i'm just wondering when the Hippocratic Oath added that vaccine status must be up to date in order for an md to treat someone......

I'm just wondering when the Hippocratic Oath added that doctors must be compelled to care for someone against their will.
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Old 09-30-2012, 02:50 PM
 
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No.  Where I live, doctors are paid for with my taxes.  I am not Ok with them refusing service for some Canadians when all Canadians pay for healthcare.

 

I also do worry about children being left without healthcare.  Who wants that?  There have been threads on here where posters complain that all the doctors in  a reasonable distance will not accept non-vaxxers.  It can leave children without care for what is their parents decision.  Vaccines are only a small part of healthcare - to refuse to see kids based on this one aspect seem punitive to me.  I wonder if they also refuse to see kids whose parents smoke, kids who live on twinkie diets, etc?  I sincerely doubt it.  In my mind it is a form of discrimination to refuse to see some people over their health choices - yet are willing to see others on health choices that are often worse, but not as controversial and media driven.

I could see some circumstances where I might get so frustrated with the parents due to the issues you mentioned that I might feel like not wanting to treat them, especially in a private practice and in an area where they can find other doctors.  It can be frustrating when people refuse to take your advice in any arena.  Generally, though, I would agree, especially in a healthcare system like yours where all doctors truly are public servants.  One related frustration here in the states is doctors refusing patients with certain insurance because they don't like dealing with state- and federally-funded health programs (because of red tape or losing money or whatever).

 

But, you are probably right about this issue getting singled out above all other health-related issues.  It is quite an overreaction when you break it down like that.


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Old 09-30-2012, 05:51 PM
 
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It's interesting that your quote focuses on children. Do you feel that adults who are not "up-to-date" on their vaccines should sit in that same room?
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I think no actually. Although I think it's reasonable to segregate them from the normal well child check waiting rooms.
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Old 09-30-2012, 06:16 PM
 
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When discussing a radius, keep in mind that not everyone has a car. I don't, and would have to be able to reach someone by public transportation.

I think doctors should have to accept patients regardless of vaccination status, because being vaccinated is *not* a guarantee that the patient does not have a vpd. So, there is no legitimate reason to refuse the patient.
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Old 09-30-2012, 07:48 PM
 
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I agree with this if we add another caveat: if there isn't another doctor within 20 miles or so, then the doctor should not refuse patients on the basis of vax status.

 

I don't think I agree with that.  I don't think doctors in rural/isolated areas should have less control over their practices.


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Old 09-30-2012, 07:49 PM
 
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When discussing a radius, keep in mind that not everyone has a car. I don't, and would have to be able to reach someone by public transportation.
I think doctors should have to accept patients regardless of vaccination status, because being vaccinated is *not* a guarantee that the patient does not have a vpd. So, there is no legitimate reason to refuse the patient.

 

Doctors can terminate relationships if patients are "non-compliant" with recommendations.  I think that's fair.  Patients can certainly terminate professional relationships if they disagree with the doctors.


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Old 09-30-2012, 08:02 PM
 
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I think no actually. Although I think it's reasonable to segregate them from the normal well child check waiting rooms.
For me the pro argument would be about trust. If you dont trust your doctor to have your best interests at heart, and you can't come to agreement over treatment/preventative measures, then there's probably a deeper problem. I can potentially agree with a doctor refusing to continue to treat someone who repeatedly rejects their medical advice..... But thats bigger than just refusing vaccines.
Of course this is a real concern of privilege too. Many people have no choice over a doctor who could/would treat them.



Would you be ok with segregating immune children from the non-immune based on mandated titer testing?

I would hope you mean to separate the subsets to protect the non-vaccinated, right? But such a thing would only further myths associated with vaccine free children and their capacity to spread disease. Without blood tests, no one can tell which children might spread illness, vaccinated or not, and separating kids out based on shot status would promote an atmosphere of ignorant discrimination.

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Old 09-30-2012, 08:58 PM
 
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I don't think I agree with that.  I don't think doctors in rural/isolated areas should have less control over their practices.

Who should have more rights - a doctor to see only patients they want or a child to health care?  That is what it might come down to in rural and isolated areas.


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Old 09-30-2012, 09:31 PM
 
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I'm not familiar with the law  ... is it ok for a doctor to refuse treating a patient for any reason whatsoever - based on, say, color, religion, race, sexual orientation, gender, age etc?  Is there anything in the federal or state level?


Pro rights (vaxes).
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Old 10-01-2012, 12:27 AM
 
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Refusing to see any non vaxxing patients is not the same as dismissing a problem patient. Some non vax patients may be problems, sure, and some may be taking unreasonable risks (for argument's sake if a hepb + mom refused to vax her newborn against the dr's advice), but not every parent questioning vaccines presents such a difficulty that a pediatrician can't continue to work with that family. If this were a case of occasional individual discretion rather than blanket policies for denying care, that would be one thing, but it's not. We're talking about a political decision by many drs en masse to deny care to a subset of parents who want better information before we trust then to administer a prophylactic drug treatment with real risks to our children's health. Whatever you decide for your family with respect to vaccinating, you can probably admit that concern over these drugs is not unreasonable. If it is reasonable to question them, you will likely find reasonable people making different decisions.

This is not simply a bunch of doctors across the country standing on their professional integrity in refusing to see people who disregard medical advice, it is organized coercion. It is political. Whether it is spurred by pharmaceutical propaganda, contingent insurance reimbursements, loss of revenue from well baby visits scheduled by the cdc's vax schedule, or the systemic arrogance of doctors who bristle at having their recommendations questioned, it is not ok.

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