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Katy Gallagher, the misogyny card and abortion rights

By Masquara 2 July 2013 38

In the context of the new RU480 legislation, The Project on Channel 10 has just screened the story of a young Canberra woman who was recently refused medical treatment (morning after pill) by publicly funded Calvary Hospital. She was also refused a referral to an alternative doctor.

Katy Gallagher has been playing the “Gillard sisterhood” card for a while now (including playing the “victim of misogyny” card herself on 7.30 last week). As she is a paid-up member of the Gillard “abortion rights” sisterhood, isn’t it time Katie stood up for reproductive rights, and insisted that publicly funded hospitals offer contraception and abortion services?

So, now that RU480 is on the pharmaceutical benefits scheme, will Calvary be required to prescribe it? 

Katy?

What’s Your opinion?


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Katy Gallagher, the misogyny card and abortion rights
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jennybel75 8:45 am 03 Jul 13

Ainslie,

For your future reference and for the reference of everyone else as well, Postinor-1 and Postinor-2 (the morning after pills, which has correctly been pointed out by Ainslie herself is not RU486) are available over the counter from pharmacies, i.e., you can get them without a script, but you do need to talk to a pharmacist.

FioBla 11:43 pm 02 Jul 13

Not directed to anyone in particular:

Any doctor working in the Calvary set of hospitals (of which there are many in Australia) should understand the Little Company of Mary philosophies. It’s in the job application (look at the job listings/description). You can find these philosophies on http://www.calvarycare.org.au/assets/docs/common/our-philosophy/ or http://www.cha.org.au/code-of-ethical-standards.html

I’m sure the various state/territory governments around Australia knew this when signing whatever agreements they have with the Little Company of Mary to run public services in essentially private facilities. Unless they are idiots (in which case, paging Masquara).

The religious beliefs of individual employed doctors themselves therefore do not directly come into play, aside from agreeing to train/work in under those conditions. And I’m quite sure I’ve seen female doctors wearing Muslim headwear there; so they don’t only employ Catholics.

So… look at the Little Company of Mary and the state government (and voters), with regards to the lack of contraception services at the local Calvary Hospitals.

Reading the original post again 12 hours later, I still do not know what RU486 being put on the PBS has to do with this event. The first third of the first sentence, and the next 2, 3, and 4 paragraphs are off-topic. But it looks like I was the first to mention RU486 in the thread, so apologies to the female involved.

sepi 10:29 pm 02 Jul 13

howeph said :

“I am very much pro choice, but just because an institution is receiving significant public funding it does not follow that the institution should be forced to give treatment that it rejects on ethical grounds (whether I, or anyone else, agree with those ethical grounds or not).”

This is very relevant – there are only 3 hospitals in Canberra to have a baby at. Now at 2 of the 3 (central and northside) and both of the private options you cannot get contraceptive advice after having a baby. You also cannot get your tubes tied as part of a caesarian, but have to book a separate operation later – this is not good practice). why should northsiders have to put up with this substandard moralistic religious wierdness.

Minz 9:42 pm 02 Jul 13

The thing is, as a doctor you are obliged (legally) to comply by the Medical Board of Australia code of conduct, which requires doctors to not impede access to legal treatments, and to not allow moral or religious views to deny access to medical care (although they may decline to personally provide that care).

IMO, any doctor in the ACT who declines to at least refer a patient to another doctor for abortion is acting at least unethically (by causing at least psychological harm to the patient) and is likely also acting illegally by acting outside of their mandated code of conduct. Any cases should be referred to the appropriate authorities for investigation and, hopefully (!) action.

howeph 8:40 pm 02 Jul 13

howeph said :

fabforty said :

Monomyth said :

Hi guys. My name is Ainslie, the girl who was in The Project’s story. I would like to clarify that I was after the Morning After Pill and not the abortion pill. I was unaware my story would be used in conjunction with a political action (RU486). I was not after a ‘termination of pregnancy’ as stated in the news piece, I was after not falling pregnant and I believe the distinction should be made.

My position was, and always has been, that if you have decided to pursue the medical profession you should NOT be allowed to decide who you do, and do not, treat.

Ainslie, I sincerely hope you eventually got the proper care you needed and am sorry you were put through that trauma.

++1

Hi Monomyth,

Upon reflection I don’t feel that my simple +1 is a suitable response to your post given that I hold a position, that whilst not completely opposed, is different to your statement:

Monomyth said :

My position was, and always has been, that if you have decided to pursue the medical profession you should NOT be allowed to decide who you do, and do not, treat.

I didn’t see the story on The Project. I am only going on the information provided here in this thread.

I don’t think that you were discriminated against based on who you are. That is, the hospital did not decide who to, and who not to treat. If you had presented with a broken leg they would have provided you with treatment.

They did discriminate against you based upon the treatment being sort. The hospital has an ethical objection (incorrect in my personal opinion) to providing the treatment that you required. Whilst I don’t like their objection, I support the hospital’s right to discriminate based upon that objection.

I would like to reiterate fabforty’s sentiments that I hope you were able to get the legitimate care that you needed.

I also want to congratulate you on having the strength and courage to publicly raise this issue. It is through your example and others like it that change to the opinion of such institutions as the Calvary Hospital and the Catholic Church will be brought about.

justin heywood 8:24 pm 02 Jul 13

I think too many of you see this is a feminist or political issue, not a moral one, which it is for some doctors.

I don’t know the doctor or the circumstances surrounding the OP, but I do know that Catholics believe that life begins at conception. That being the case, it should come as no surprise that a doctor who is a practising, faithful Catholic may regard facilitating the termination of a foetus the same as taking a life.

Thus these doctors aren’t ‘imposing their moral values’ but protecting life as they see it, as yet unborn. I don’t personally share their views but I reckon they’re entitled to hold them.

I would suggest that if you are specifically looking for the ‘Morning After Pill’ or a termination, common sense would suggest avoiding hospitals with names like Calvary and driving the extra 20 minutes to TCH.

.

Queen_of_the_Bun 8:19 pm 02 Jul 13

Given that the young woman involved has said she was not asking for the abortion pill RU486, just the morning after pill which is available over the counter from any pharmacist, what is the point of this post?

Except maybe to alert young women in her position that they do not need to see a doctor to get the morning after pill, they can just go to Priceline or Chemist’s Warehouse or their local pharmacy.

p1 7:21 pm 02 Jul 13

howeph said :

p1 said :

Comic_and_Gamer_Nerd said :

I still find it insane, that any doktor, who now days has a profession that is based on science, can be religious or a pro lifer. Makes zero sense.

Yup. I kind of feel they should never have been issued with a licence to practice medicine since they fail the most basic test of the scientific method.

Medical practitioners are not scientists. They practice applied science.

A doctor practices applied biology, chemistry, immunology, etc mixed in with a significant dose of psychology (which is not a science), in the same way a structural engineer practices applied physics and chemistry.

All of medicine must be practised within a strong ethical frame work.

In contrast the scientific method, to be free from bias, must be ethically neutral.

Research ethics constrains the areas of scientific exploration and is the reason why psychology isn’t a science; because most human experimentation is unethical.

You make a good arguement that doctors are not scientists.

I counter with the suggestion that if you understand the scientific method, accept the results of people using the scientific method to discover the best health options/drugs/technologies/etc, and then decide to not provide such an option because of traditions involving ghosts and ritualistic symbolic consumption of human flesh – then you are neither a scientist nor an applied scientist.

c_c™ 7:18 pm 02 Jul 13

I am pro choice, however I am not for forcing medical practitioners to become atheists, no matter how different their moral judgement may be to mine.

People on here are already going off on the predictable tangents, muslims, emergency room wait times, blah blah.

Fact is the women in the story had plenty of alternative options and 72hrs to use them, including SHFP and CSHC, the former which advertises on the radio frequently, the latter part of the Canberra Hospital complex provided by ACT Health.

There is a lesson from her story and that is there need’s to be more education and sense, because there growing evidence that despite the most life skills education the curriculum has ever had, a lot of folks are still doing dumb things.

nazasaurus 7:17 pm 02 Jul 13

The morning after pill is readily available over the counter from any pharmacy without a prescription.. costs around 20-30 dollars. Lots of people get if no fuss from there. If I need paracetamol or cough mixture I cant just turn up to the hospital expecting to receive it.. how is this any different to your treatment.

Mysteryman 7:04 pm 02 Jul 13

Comic_and_Gamer_Nerd said :

I still find it insane, that any doktor, who now days has a profession that is based on science, can be religious or a pro lifer. Makes zero sense.

Comic_and_Gamer_Nerd said :

I still find it insane, that any doktor, who now days has a profession that is based on science, can be religious or a pro lifer. Makes zero sense.

Yup. I kind of feel they should never have been issued with a licence to practice medicine since they fail the most basic test of the scientific method.

I find it amusing that you are judging the intelligence of professionals who are clearly a lot smarter than both of you.

watto23 6:07 pm 02 Jul 13

Monomyth said :

Hi guys. My name is Ainslie, the girl who was in The Project’s story. I would like to clarify that I was after the Morning After Pill and not the abortion pill. I was unaware my story would be used in conjunction with a political action (RU486). I was not after a ‘termination of pregnancy’ as stated in the news piece, I was after not falling pregnant and I believe the distinction should be made.

My position was, and always has been, that if you have decided to pursue the medical profession you should NOT be allowed to decide who you do, and do not, treat.

Completely agree. A doctor should be basing his decision on the personal health of the person going to see them, not on their own personal beliefs. If there was a genuine medical reason to not supply what was required it should have been stated. Worst case if the doctor was unable to handle this due to their own personal beliefs then they should have been referred to another doctor or nearby medical centre that could handle it.

I respect the right to have your own beliefs, but if thats going to affect how one does their job, then it needs to be clear and upfront at the minimum. We’d all get up in arms if some local muslims decided to practise something in their beliefs that is demeaning to women, but not if the beliefs are part of Catholicism or christianity.

howeph 6:04 pm 02 Jul 13

fabforty said :

Monomyth said :

Hi guys. My name is Ainslie, the girl who was in The Project’s story. I would like to clarify that I was after the Morning After Pill and not the abortion pill. I was unaware my story would be used in conjunction with a political action (RU486). I was not after a ‘termination of pregnancy’ as stated in the news piece, I was after not falling pregnant and I believe the distinction should be made.

My position was, and always has been, that if you have decided to pursue the medical profession you should NOT be allowed to decide who you do, and do not, treat.

Ainslie, I sincerely hope you eventually got the proper care you needed and am sorry you were put through that trauma.

++1

howeph 5:53 pm 02 Jul 13

p1 said :

Comic_and_Gamer_Nerd said :

I still find it insane, that any doktor, who now days has a profession that is based on science, can be religious or a pro lifer. Makes zero sense.

Yup. I kind of feel they should never have been issued with a licence to practice medicine since they fail the most basic test of the scientific method.

Medical practitioners are not scientists. They practice applied science.

A doctor practices applied biology, chemistry, immunology, etc mixed in with a significant dose of psychology (which is not a science), in the same way a structural engineer practices applied physics and chemistry.

All of medicine must be practised within a strong ethical frame work.

In contrast the scientific method, to be free from bias, must be ethically neutral.

Research ethics constrains the areas of scientific exploration and is the reason why psychology isn’t a science; because most human experimentation is unethical.

scoot 5:44 pm 02 Jul 13

Monomyth said :

My position was, and always has been, that if you have decided to pursue the medical profession you should NOT be allowed to decide who you do, and do not, treat.

99% agree. If a Doctor, or medical institution, is going to take public funding, it is reasonable they be forced to place their religious hangups aside and treat people with the same respect they would expect their own beliefs to be afforded – whether they agree with their patient or not.

I find it disheartening religious institutions require others respect their beliefs while not respecting others. This one-way discrimination seems to be broadening..

Ainslie, I’m sorry to hear you were forced through this. I hope you found the care you needed!

howeph 5:32 pm 02 Jul 13

Masquara said :

howeph said :

I am very much pro choice, but just because an institution is receiving significant public funding it does not follow that the institution should be forced to give treatment that it rejects on ethical grounds (whether I, or anyone else, agree with those ethical grounds or not).

Are you also happy that the taxpayer funded hospital refused to refer the young woman elsewhere?

‘Happy’ is certainly not the word I would use to describe my response. But I *accept* their refusal, on their stated ethical grounds (even though I disagree with those ethical grounds), to refer her elsewhere.

It’s like a doctor that disagrees with voluntary euthanasia – despite my belief in a persons right to die with dignity – I can understand that doctor’s right not to assist in any way, including not providing a referral.

It comes down to rights and responsibilities. If we accept that people have the right to their own religious and ethical beliefs (and I say this as an atheist), then we have a responsibility not to force our own beliefs onto them.

Forcing people to perform services or provide assistance that they object to on ethical grounds is in its self unethical.

fabforty 5:29 pm 02 Jul 13

Monomyth said :

Hi guys. My name is Ainslie, the girl who was in The Project’s story. I would like to clarify that I was after the Morning After Pill and not the abortion pill. I was unaware my story would be used in conjunction with a political action (RU486). I was not after a ‘termination of pregnancy’ as stated in the news piece, I was after not falling pregnant and I believe the distinction should be made.

My position was, and always has been, that if you have decided to pursue the medical profession you should NOT be allowed to decide who you do, and do not, treat.

Hi Ainslie. I didn’t see the piece on The Project but thankyou for providing some clarification on this issue.

The morning after pill can, when taken early enough, prevent conception. This differs from RU486 which can bring on a termination of an already conceived embryo.

Ainslie, I sincerely hope you eventually got the proper care you needed and am sorry you were put through that trauma.

Grrrr 5:09 pm 02 Jul 13

howeph said :

Is RU480 the same as RU486?

The name “RU480” seems to be commonly used in error. The name is RU-486 – A.K.A RU-38486 or Mifepristone; trade names Mifeprex etc,etc: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mifepristone

Note again that Masquara has it wrong: RU-486 is not what Monomyth was after – she wanted an ECP: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Emergency_contraception

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