Protection of Health-Care Providers’ Rights of Conscience in American Law: Present, Past, and Future
Lynn D. Wardle, 𝘗𝘳𝘰𝘵𝘦𝘤𝘵𝘪𝘰𝘯 𝘰𝘧 𝘏𝘦𝘢𝘭𝘵𝘩-𝘊𝘢𝘳𝘦 𝘗𝘳𝘰𝘷𝘪𝘥𝘦𝘳𝘴’ 𝘙𝘪𝘨𝘩𝘵𝘴 𝘰𝘧 𝘊𝘰𝘯𝘴𝘤𝘪𝘦𝘯𝘤𝘦 𝘪𝘯 𝘈𝘮𝘦𝘳𝘪𝘤𝘢𝘯 𝘓𝘢𝘸: 𝘗𝘳𝘦𝘴𝘦𝘯𝘵, 𝘗𝘢𝘴𝘵, 𝘢𝘯𝘥 𝘍𝘶𝘵𝘶𝘳𝘦, 9 Aᴠᴇ Mᴀʀɪᴀ L. Rᴇᴠ. 1 (2010).
Right of Conscience, Healthcare Provider, Abortion
This article reviews the past, present, and future state of healthcare providers’ right of conscience. It reviews the deeply embedded constitutional protections that recognize the right of conscience as a fundamental human right, and additionally, it shows that the constitutional doctrine of abortion privacy assumes and allows protection for the rights of conscience of healthcare providers. After reviewing the past, the present state of protection of right of conscience is set forth, including the Provider Conscience Rule adopted by the Department of Health and Human Services in 2008. The future of the 2008 Provider Conscience Rule is considered, since there has been debate over rescinding it, and the article concludes that while it is possible to fully protect rights of conscience, full commitment is needed to honor this important, fundamental right.
9 Ave Maria L. Rev
Ave Maria Law Review