Friday, June 09, 2006

Non-pharma Pharmacists

Just when you think that things can’t possibly get any screwier than they already are, they do.

I’m referring, of course, to pharmacists who are now refusing to fill emergency contraceptive prescriptions on moral, religious or philosophical grounds. Maybe they just want to force more women into having abortions so they can oppose that, too.

Does anyone besides me see where this is headed?

If pharmacists can selectively refuse to perform duties (filling legal prescriptions) that are a normal part of their profession, how long will it be before other professionals begin doing the same thing? Once a trend like this gets started, it becomes ever more insidious.

The next thing you know Christian doctors who are morally or philosophically opposed to atheists won’t write prescriptions for them. Environmentalist doctors can justify withholding treatment to automobile accident victims because they find driving a car to be morally reprehensible. Right-handed dentists might refuse to fill the teeth of left-handed patients because they find left-handedness objectionable. Christian Scientist EMTs will draw a paycheck just for showing up for work, but they’ll never have to do anything.

And don’t expect this idiocy to be contained within the medical professions. Once the idea catches on, it will spread like wildfire. Soon, vegetarian meat cutters won’t slice bacon for their omnivorous brethren, cops who are morally opposed to crime will stop arresting criminals, and baseball players won’t play for fans that are opposed to steroid use. Such lunacy invites disaster upon the entire economy.

It’s a can of worms best left unopened. The best way to leave this can of worms unopened is to grant pharmacist licenses only to those people who are capable of fulfilling all aspects of the job.

For pharmacies that already employ pharmacists who profess an inability to carry out the obligations of their profession due to conscientious objections, there's a way to make it easy for your ethically challenged employees to find a more suitable line of work.

Fire them!