Thursday, October 04, 2007

An Update {From Looong, Loooong Ago....}

Humboldt doctors quit {found on web December 19th, 2006}

Two of Humboldt's eight doctors are quitting. It's over ethical disagreements with the Catholic Health Care Corporation - which runs St. Elizabeth Hospital in Humboldt.

Dr. Carrie Levick and Jacqueline Bourgeois say it's been a tough decision. But they are resigning from their practices in Humboldt because they don't want to work in a Catholic Health Care Enivronment anymore. The recent ban on tubal ligations - the final straw.

Dr. Jacqueline Bourgeois/Humboldt Doctor: "Tubal ligations can't be done if the sole purpose is contraception. It's that part we find offensive and don't agree with."

Dr. Carrie Levick/Humboldt Doctor: "Personally you have to make a decision on what type of things you wish to be affiliated with and which you don't."

The irony is that after months of controversy, tubal ligations will now be permitted in Humboldt, providing the doctors provide the pro's and con's with the patient. But the doctors say they've had enough. That's because it's not the only ethical issue where they are at odds with Catholic teaching. They also don't agree with the church's opposition to in-vitro reproduction, and contraception.

Dr. Carrie Levick/Humboldt Doctor: "When we first came to work in the hospital, it's a slight on both parties. We didn't understand what we were getting into. When you enter work in a faith based hospital, I don't believe any of us read the code of ethics."

Their resignations take effect in three months. A third doctor - who also agrees with them - is retiring. That means three of Humboldt's eight doctors will be gone. The health region hopes they will reconsider.

Dr. Femi Olatunbosun/Saskatoon Health Region: "It is our hope the physicians don't resign, we hope those who have unresolved issues continue to work in the system to address those concerns."

Both want to stay in Saskatchewan, and say its been tough.

Dr. Jacqueline Bourgoeis/Humboldt Doctor: "You reach a point where you've got to have your own values and stick with what you believe in." The Health Region believes it may be close to recruiting two more doctors. Whether the controversy will affect that remains to be seen.

See my original post on this story.

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