Mar 24, 2015
By Kim O'Hare
The Ontario College of Physicians and Surgeons is facing a legal battle from a group of Christian doctors. The Doctors are challenging a new policy that they say will force them to refer patients to procedures such as abortion and birth control that go against their conscience.
The Christian Medical and Dental Society of Canada wants to overturn a College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario policy on professional obligations and human rights.
The policy dictates that a physician is unwilling to provide certain elements of care because of moral or religious beliefs, must provide an “effective referral” to another health-care provider.
The Christian doctors say that the obligation to provide an “effective referral” that will ultimately facilitate a procedure they object to on religious grounds is “unconscionable.”
The group’s executive director, Larry Worthen, says its members have a variety of “conscience concerns” such as abortion, physician-assisted death, in vitro fertilization and contraception.