Thursday, February 19, 2015
Pediatrician, "After Much Prayer," Refuses To Treat Lesbian Couple's Infant
The Detroit Free Press yesterday reported on a new arena for religious objections to providing services to same-sex couples. A suburban Detroit lesbian couple were told by a pediatrician that they had chosen that "after much prayer" she decided that she could not provide medical services to their newborn. The news was given to the couple by a different staff physician as the mothers sat in the exam room waiting for their newborn's first checkup. The two mothers had previously met with Dr. Venesa Roi and chosen her particularly because of her holistic approach to treating children. In a subsequent letter to the couple, Roi told them she was sorry that her decision hurt them, but she decided she could not develop the proper personal doctor-patient relationship with them. She added that they were always welcome in the office to be seen by another physician on staff. Michigan's Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act does not ban discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation, though the ethics rules of the AMA and American Academy of Pediatrics do.