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At UC you can only get contraceptives to stop you being gay

By johnboy - 17 October 2012 57

An interesting yarn in Crikey today about UC student James Kent and Dr Rehana Dutton:

In August 2011 Kent visited Dr Rehana Dutton at the university’s Health and Counselling Centre, after hearing from other students that Dutton refused to prescribe contraception. ”I went in primarily just to find out what the Billings and rhythm methods were,” Kent, the former general secretary of the University of Canberra students association, told Crikey. “And then I thought, if she cares this much about contraception, there’s a chance she might also be homophobic as well. I brought up I was same-sex attracted to see what would happen and that’s when things got weird.”

Kent tells Crikey that when he told the doctor that he’d been experiencing “thoughts about men” and asked whether these thoughts were natural, Dutton queried whether Kent had been feeling depressed. After Kent pressed further on whether his same-sex attraction was normal, Kent says that Dutton told him the evidence was inconclusive and she suggested a hormone imbalance may be to blame.

According to Kent, she then wrote a referral for a hormone test, and suggested a hormone treatment such as implanon?—?a female contraceptive inserted under the skin?—?may be effective. Dutton also suggested he speak with a priest and gave Kent the number for CatholicCare, a church-based social services organisation.

A fascinating approach for a seat of higher learning.

What’s Your opinion?


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At UC you can only get contraceptives to stop you being gay
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TallBoy 1:30 am 21 Oct 12

DrKoresh said :

joingler said :

As for the alleged homophobia, I reckon that the problem would be solved if each doctor was made to put their views on such issues publicly, that way people could choose who they want. That way, people on both sides of the debate stay happy

This is an idea I can get behind. Sorry e’ryone, I realise my last post was a bit emotive, I don’t want to ban religious people from practising medicine, I’m just made extremely uncomfortable by the idea of this being done in a school, where she is in a position of authority over the students not only as a doctor, but as a representative of the University. If prejudices (religiously motivated or not, they’re still prejudices) were made clear to people prior to the appointment with the doctor then that would ameliorate a lot my concerns.

Also, keep in mind that this isn’t a private practice, I have no argument against GPs doing what they want with their own practice (within reason, obviously).

This is complete rubbish. You clearly don’t bother to think before you post. She is not in a position of authority over the students. Where did you get that from? You are living in your own deluded fantasy world my friend.

Her prejudices against contraception are made clear beforehand – apparently there are signs.

Actually, it is a private practice – “The general practitioners provide their services from the Centre as private practitioners, not as employees of the University.” (http://www.canberra.edu.au/health-counselling) It’s right there in the first paragraph.

You appear to just blurt out whatever it is you want to believe the most. Since you don’t seem like a troll, you must be an idiot.

TallBoy 1:04 am 21 Oct 12

DrKoresh said :

TallBoy said :

So poppy, are you saying that doctors should not have the right to refuse services which contradict their religious beliefs? Are they not reasonable grounds in your book?

Are we not being just a tad dramatic about this poppy? Do you realize how hysterical it sounds to talk of the “harshness” of this doctors visit causing long term physical and mental damage. We all have the luxury of choice when it comes to the doctors we see, we can walk out at any time. What’s more, how do you know what the nature of the interaction was, or how harsh it was? Unless your name is Kent or Dutton I would think you have no idea how it played out.

Mr Kent was clearly comfortable enough with his sexuality to bring up the subject just to “see what would happen” after he suspected a homophobe doctor. Even if it was someone coming out for the first time you would still sound ridiculous.

Why should we expect doctors who are religious to prescribe a contraceptive if they believe that doing so implicates them in an unlawful act according to their religion? Who are you to tell them that they should? Simply find another doctor and stop howling.

Its a good thing that people far more clear minded than you are in charge of things like medical registration boards, otherwise we would all be waiting longer to see doctors.

Why am I constantly surprised by the lack of moderate voices on a website like this?

If you want to be a doctor then you must first do no harm, and I believe that in this case she failed in her duty. I can say that she certainly doesn’t represent the standard of care provided by the UC health service though, I was pleasantly surprised with the quality of care I recieved. But anyway TallBoy, stop with all the bloody rhetorical questions too, you just sound like a wanker with a superiority-complex. If this lady wants to refuse to provide medical treatment due to her back-wards ass, oogy-boogy religion she should be doing it at a Catholic institution.

The events as described sound awful, I commend this student for exposing behaviour that has no place in an institution like UC. Even though we’re talking about adults here, she still has a duty of care over young people, many who are only18 or 19 years old. Now I blossomed early sexuality-wise but I know many people who didn’t and some that still haven’t. She shouldn’t be in a position where she can propagandise to and shame young, and often vulnerable, homosexuals. If you don’t see a problem with that, BallToy, it’s either because you’re a believer in this ludicrous, vestigial and repressive set of beliefs or an heinous, unspeakable cretin.

To clarify, I’m not against religious people being doctors, but if they want to use the provision of medical care as a vehicle to harass and malign people or refuse to provide medical treatment on the grounds of an out-moded religious ideology then they should do so within their own religious community, not the community at large and most certainly not at the University of Canberra

DrKoresh, thank you sharing the heartfelt story of your early sexual blossoming with me. Perhaps your brain development suffered as a result? Apart from that one, I don’t think any of my questions were rhetorical. They are legitimate questions, and you haven’t so much as tried to answer any of them.

Instead it’s very black and white to you isn’t it – I’m not jumping on the “lets get Dutton deregistered” bandwagon therefore I must be either an evangelist catholic right winger, or a cretin condoning the shaming and propagandising of those poor vulnerable young homosexuals. Seriously? How does your mind come up with rubbish like that? I would love to know.

The homosexuals I know don’t seem to give a shit about what other people think about their sexuality, least of all catholic doctors.

You sound like you’re on your own personal witch hunt to expose homophobic prejudice even where it may not even exist. You imply she goes around propagandizing and shaming young, vulnerable homosexuals, or harassing and malinging people to whom she has a duty of care. Got any evidence for that? Some gay UC students say they have never had a problem with her according to the UC students association. Sounds like you’re the one propagandising here.

I was simply making the point that it is completely ridiculous to start jumping to conclusions, like some have here, about her motives/performance as a doctor when a) we do not have the full story, and b) Mr Kent had an ulterior motive for going to see her in the first place – it doesn’t sound like your average “young vulnerable homosexual visits and gets shamed by doctor” scenario to me. If something like that happened to you way back before you “blossomed” then I’m sorry for you.

This is clearly an emotional issue for you, but that’s no reason to go around calling people wankers and cretins. Have you lost your manners?

I did like BallToy though… well done… made me chuckle. You have ruined my username for me lol

1337Hax0r 9:48 pm 20 Oct 12

Oh is Dutton still in employment? She’s a well known homophone. My son had a run in with her. She should be fired, deregulated and refused employment with any organisation that gets public money. Most GLBT students are warned to avoid her through the grapevine.

milkman 6:03 pm 20 Oct 12

colourful sydney racing identity said :

milkman said :

colourful sydney racing identity said :

TheDancingDjinn said :

refer him to a non religious counsellor and give legitimate medical advice. It is not rocket science.

You shouldn’t assume the counsellor is religious. Lots of charities and support organisations that are supported or associated with religious organisations have non-religious people, including counsellors, working for them.

Do you really believe that the organisation in question would allow a staff member to tell someone to go for it and get all the cock they want?

I know several gay people who work for another religious charity. Many religious people don’t actually care that much, even if you do.

milkman said :

colourful sydney racing identity said :

TheDancingDjinn said :

refer him to a non religious counsellor and give legitimate medical advice. It is not rocket science.

You shouldn’t assume the counsellor is religious. Lots of charities and support organisations that are supported or associated with religious organisations have non-religious people, including counsellors, working for them.

Do you really believe that the organisation in question would allow a staff member to tell someone to go for it and get all the cock they want?

milkman 3:17 pm 20 Oct 12

colourful sydney racing identity said :

TheDancingDjinn said :

refer him to a non religious counsellor and give legitimate medical advice. It is not rocket science.

You shouldn’t assume the counsellor is religious. Lots of charities and support organisations that are supported or associated with religious organisations have non-religious people, including counsellors, working for them.

colourful sydney racing identity said :

Could not have said it better myself.

How abuot we just take it as read that you disagree with me on everything I post and you agree with anyone who disagrees with me, that way you will not need to waste time telling the world and you can devote more time to sitting under your bridge waiting for the Billy Goats Gruff?

TheDancingDjinn said :

I do not understand the rage against this doctor?? – this guy went to the doctor, to say he was upset he was gay? If she had said something along the lines of ” Oh well, then you’re gay! go out and dress fabulously, dance and love men ? if i were upset at something and y doctor told me to suck it up i would be upset. This particular instance is that the young man went in to say he was not doing well with the gay thoughts he had, what is she meant to do ? what would you have her do? tell them to embrace their homosexuality ( even if that upsets them?) or to try and calm his mind till maybe he can get his head around it??

At the end of the day the guy who went in, was not upset, was not gay ( or he might be i dunno), was not doing anything except whinging that they want a different doctor.

tell me – what would you want her to do ??

refer him to a non religious counsellor and give legitimate medical advice. It is not rocket science.

TheDancingDjinn 11:19 am 20 Oct 12

I do not understand the rage against this doctor?? – this guy went to the doctor, to say he was upset he was gay? If she had said something along the lines of ” Oh well, then you’re gay! go out and dress fabulously, dance and love men ? if i were upset at something and y doctor told me to suck it up i would be upset. This particular instance is that the young man went in to say he was not doing well with the gay thoughts he had, what is she meant to do ? what would you have her do? tell them to embrace their homosexuality ( even if that upsets them?) or to try and calm his mind till maybe he can get his head around it?? At the end of the day the guy who went in, was not upset, was not gay ( or he might be i dunno), was not doing anything except whinging that they want a different doctor.

tell me – what would you want her to do ??

TallBoy said :

You say you are appalled that medical practitioners can have religious beliefs.

where did I say that????

Mysteryman said :

TallBoy said :

colourful sydney racing identity said :

I am pretty sure that there is a sign saying that this doctor will not provide contraception. Personally, I am appalled that a medical practioner is allowed to let their religious beliefs inform their treatment of patients, but apparently it is acceptable for them to do so.

However, how on earth can it be acceptable for a doctor to refer a patient to a priest?

Maybe you failed to read the article closely and your imagination got the better of you. Where does it say she made a referral to a priest? You make it sound as though she sat down and wrote him a prescription for old Father Bob to bible bash some sense into him.

Apparently she mentioned a few approaches to James’s so called problem. How can you claim to have any idea about the nature of the way she brought up the subject of seeing a priest? According to James, she made a suggestion that (however misguided you believe that suggestion to be is irrelevant) he see a priest, among what appears to be other suggestions. How does that translate to a referral in your mind? Is everything a doctor suggests automatically a referral?

Let’s not forget, aside from the fact that we don’t seem to have Dutton’s side of the story, that Mr Kent apparently knew she was catholic before he went to see her. We simply do not know how the interaction took place or how the subject of a priest was brought up.

You say you are appalled that medical practitioners can have religious beliefs. I say that morality is heavily subjective and thankfully, no doctor, or anybody else have to conform to your personal sense of it.

Could not have said it better myself.

Well *there’s* a surprise….

DrKoresh 1:22 am 20 Oct 12

joingler said :

As for the alleged homophobia, I reckon that the problem would be solved if each doctor was made to put their views on such issues publicly, that way people could choose who they want. That way, people on both sides of the debate stay happy

This is an idea I can get behind. Sorry e’ryone, I realise my last post was a bit emotive, I don’t want to ban religious people from practising medicine, I’m just made extremely uncomfortable by the idea of this being done in a school, where she is in a position of authority over the students not only as a doctor, but as a representative of the University. If prejudices (religiously motivated or not, they’re still prejudices) were made clear to people prior to the appointment with the doctor then that would ameliorate a lot my concerns.

Also, keep in mind that this isn’t a private practice, I have no argument against GPs doing what they want with their own practice (within reason, obviously).

DrKoresh 1:07 am 20 Oct 12

TallBoy said :

So poppy, are you saying that doctors should not have the right to refuse services which contradict their religious beliefs? Are they not reasonable grounds in your book?

Are we not being just a tad dramatic about this poppy? Do you realize how hysterical it sounds to talk of the “harshness” of this doctors visit causing long term physical and mental damage. We all have the luxury of choice when it comes to the doctors we see, we can walk out at any time. What’s more, how do you know what the nature of the interaction was, or how harsh it was? Unless your name is Kent or Dutton I would think you have no idea how it played out.

Mr Kent was clearly comfortable enough with his sexuality to bring up the subject just to “see what would happen” after he suspected a homophobe doctor. Even if it was someone coming out for the first time you would still sound ridiculous.

Why should we expect doctors who are religious to prescribe a contraceptive if they believe that doing so implicates them in an unlawful act according to their religion? Who are you to tell them that they should? Simply find another doctor and stop howling.

Its a good thing that people far more clear minded than you are in charge of things like medical registration boards, otherwise we would all be waiting longer to see doctors.

Why am I constantly surprised by the lack of moderate voices on a website like this?

If you want to be a doctor then you must first do no harm, and I believe that in this case she failed in her duty. I can say that she certainly doesn’t represent the standard of care provided by the UC health service though, I was pleasantly surprised with the quality of care I recieved. But anyway TallBoy, stop with all the bloody rhetorical questions too, you just sound like a wanker with a superiority-complex. If this lady wants to refuse to provide medical treatment due to her back-wards ass, oogy-boogy religion she should be doing it at a Catholic institution.

The events as described sound awful, I commend this student for exposing behaviour that has no place in an institution like UC. Even though we’re talking about adults here, she still has a duty of care over young people, many who are only18 or 19 years old. Now I blossomed early sexuality-wise but I know many people who didn’t and some that still haven’t. She shouldn’t be in a position where she can propagandise to and shame young, and often vulnerable, homosexuals. If you don’t see a problem with that, BallToy, it’s either because you’re a believer in this ludicrous, vestigial and repressive set of beliefs or an heinous, unspeakable cretin.

To clarify, I’m not against religious people being doctors, but if they want to use the provision of medical care as a vehicle to harass and malign people or refuse to provide medical treatment on the grounds of an out-moded religious ideology then they should do so within their own religious community, not the community at large and most certainly not at the University of Canberra

dundle 11:49 pm 19 Oct 12

rhino said :

From what I can tell, this person heard a rumour that this doctor has certain views about homosexuality and religion and so went in to TRY and get them into trouble over it. Repeatedly asking if it was “normal” to have gay feelings?? lol what. Clearly trying to get her in trouble. They still didn’t say that it wasn’t, they just obviously took it into the context that they were worried about it and seemed not to want to be gay and offered some advice on that, which is a legitimate question for someone to ask, especially if they seemed religious, which she seemed to think with the catholic advice thing. So now you want them to fire her just because some person decided to deliberately go in there asking certain questions to get an answer to get them in trouble.

I suspect this is 100% the case. He was obviously trying to get her in trouble – firstly does anyone really go to a GP to tell them they are gay? Um…okay then. If you go to the doctor it probably means you have a problem with it, so she was trying to help. I don’t applaud religion at all but I think when it comes down to a GP scenario in the city (i.e. not urgent, choice), they should have the right to refuse things based on their beliefs. They are people, after all, not robots who have to do everything. Doctors refuse to do certain things all the time, not just because of religion. There are a few in Ginninderra Medical who won’t do narcotics (in fact the whole centre won’t now, or sleeping pills) and one who didn’t do plaster and the men wouldn’t do pap smears.

I do wonder if the doctor had this guy figured out and was trolling him back.

Mysteryman 8:42 am 19 Oct 12

TallBoy said :

colourful sydney racing identity said :

I am pretty sure that there is a sign saying that this doctor will not provide contraception. Personally, I am appalled that a medical practioner is allowed to let their religious beliefs inform their treatment of patients, but apparently it is acceptable for them to do so.

However, how on earth can it be acceptable for a doctor to refer a patient to a priest?

Maybe you failed to read the article closely and your imagination got the better of you. Where does it say she made a referral to a priest? You make it sound as though she sat down and wrote him a prescription for old Father Bob to bible bash some sense into him.

Apparently she mentioned a few approaches to James’s so called problem. How can you claim to have any idea about the nature of the way she brought up the subject of seeing a priest? According to James, she made a suggestion that (however misguided you believe that suggestion to be is irrelevant) he see a priest, among what appears to be other suggestions. How does that translate to a referral in your mind? Is everything a doctor suggests automatically a referral?

Let’s not forget, aside from the fact that we don’t seem to have Dutton’s side of the story, that Mr Kent apparently knew she was catholic before he went to see her. We simply do not know how the interaction took place or how the subject of a priest was brought up.

You say you are appalled that medical practitioners can have religious beliefs. I say that morality is heavily subjective and thankfully, no doctor, or anybody else have to conform to your personal sense of it.

Could not have said it better myself.

bigfeet 7:10 am 19 Oct 12

Mr Evil said :

I’m sorry, but as far as I am concerned religion has no place at all in medicine and anyone who lets their personal skyfairy beliefs cloud their professional judgement shouldn’t be entitled to any Medicare funding. As a health care professional you should be there for all patients – whatever their needs.

You’d be in big trouble if you ever needed a blood transfusion and the doctor attending to you in Accident and Emergency just happened to a Jehovah Witness who refused to allow you to have the blood transfusion because of their religoius beliefs.

Exactly. We don’t allow this in other service occupations. Imagine the uproar in any of these situations:

Police Officer “Well ma’am according to my religious beliefs a husband has the right to beat a disrespectful wife…so just get up off the floor and make his dinner or I’ll be forced to give you a kicking to.”

Teacher “Good morning class, I’m your new science teacher. Now in my class there is none of that evolution crap…the answer to any question is Because God Said So”

Fireman “Well of course I’ll put your fire out, but because I am Amish it will take a while to organise a bucket-brigade. None of those hoses here. They are the tools of the devil.”

Pope ” No you can’t have that high powered and influential position as Bishop because you have a vagina” …Oh..wait…

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