Catholic M.D.'s Worry After H.H.S. Mandate

Some Catholics who want to practice medicine in conformity with the church’s teachings worry that a new federal regulation requiring health plans to cover contraceptives and sterilization represents a governmental intrusion into health care that could grow. Anne Nolte, M.D., right, a family physician in New York, said, “If Congress failed to pass an act that provides an exemption for the groups affected by this, and the courts in some incomprehensible way allow [the mandate] to stand, then Catholic health care will have to make a decision to practice civil disobedience.” A fourth-year medical student at Tulane University School of Medicine in New Orleans, Sarah Smith made clear during residency interviews that her Catholic convictions prevent her from involvement in abortion, sterilization or contraception. Now she worries that an atmosphere in which she already finds some challenges to her pro-life convictions will further sour. “The one safe environment—Catholic hospitals—is not even going to be safe anymore,” she said. Dr. Kim Hardey, of Lafayette, La., believes that some in Washington would like to drive obstetrician-gynecologists like him, who will not perform abortions, out of business. “There are not that many of us...that we’d be too big to go after,” he said.

Comments are automatically closed two weeks after an article's initial publication. See our comments policy for more.

Advertisement
Advertisement

Don't miss the best from America

Sign up for our Newsletter to get the Jesuit perspective on news, faith and culture.

The latest from america

Formed in 2011, The Oh Hellos' Christianity is one of their foundational inspirations, evident in lines like "the only God I should have loved."
Colleen DulleJanuary 23, 2018
People gather at a June 14 candlelight vigil in Manila, Philippines, in memory of the victims of the mass shooting at a gay nightclub in Orlando, Fla. Philippine Catholic bishops called for vigilance against bullying, ostracism and harassment of gay people in the wake of the incident in which police said a lone gunman killed 49 people early June 12 at the club. (CNS photo/Mark R. Cristino, EPA)
“We are losing three generations of people, and we need to hear why,” said Bishop Mark O’Connell.
Michael J. O’LoughlinJanuary 23, 2018
I want to be able to serve the state better. I want to be able to serve more of the state.
Nathan SchneiderJanuary 23, 2018
Democrats, and the Republicans who understand Dreamers are owed protection, could take a lesson from people of color around the country in how to navigate a political process tainted by racism. The lives of 800,000 Dreamers depend on it.
Antonio De Loera-BrustJanuary 22, 2018