A doctor who considers the national health-care overhaul to be bad medicine for the country posted a sign on his office door telling patients who voted for President Barack Obama to seek care "elsewhere."Yes, but shoving a hugely unpopular law down the throats of the American people against our will isn't "pushing the limit" I suppose.
"I'm not turning anybody away — that would be unethical," Dr. Jack Cassell, 56, a Mount Dora urologist and a registered Republican opposed to the health plan, told the Orlando Sentinel on Thursday. "But if they read the sign and turn the other way, so be it."
The sign reads: "If you voted for Obama … seek urologic care elsewhere. Changes to your healthcare begin right now, not in four years."
Estella Chatman, 67, of Eustis, whose daughter snapped a photo of the typewritten sign, sent the picture to U.S. Rep. Alan Grayson, the Orlando Democrat who riled Republicans last year when he characterized the GOP's idea of health care as, "If you get sick, America … Die quickly."
Chatman said she heard about the sign from a friend referred to Cassell after his physician recently died. She said her friend did not want to speak to a reporter but was dismayed by Cassell's sign.
"He's going to find another doctor," she said.
Cassell may be walking a thin line between his right to free speech and his professional obligation, said William Allen, professor of bioethics, law and medical professionalism at the University of Florida's College of Medicine.
Allen said doctors cannot refuse patients on the basis of race, gender, religion, sexual orientation or disability, but political preference is not one of the legally protected categories specified in civil-rights law. By insisting he does not quiz his patients about their politics and has not turned away patients based on their vote, the doctor is "trying to hold onto the nub of his ethical obligation," Allen said.
"But this is pushing the limit," he said.
Cassell, whose lawyer wife, Leslie Campione, has declared herself a Republican candidate for Lake County commissioner, said three patients have complained, but most have been "overwhelmingly supportive" of his position.Hot Air links. Thanks!
"They know it's not good for them," he said.