Florida Republicans Dig Harder, Reach New Low


While I do not believe this bill would pass Constitutional muster under even the most Federalist of judges, I must document misanthropy where I see it.  Apparently the Republicans have decided that religious freedom takes priority over a person’s ability to have medical care paid for.  This is a direct assault against the LGBTQIA+ community, women, and if the mood fits, minorities as well.

CS/CS/HB 1403: Protections of Medical Conscience

GENERAL BILL by Health & Human Services Committee ; Healthcare Regulation Subcommittee ; Rudman ; (CO-INTRODUCERS) Baker ; Bankson ; Beltran ; Black ; Garcia ; Michael ; Steele

Protections of Medical Conscience; Authorizes health care providers & health care payors to opt out of participation in or payment for health care services by conscience-based objections without discrimination or threat of adverse actions; requires health care provider to notify patient and health care provider’s supervisor or employee or educational institution in writing when such health care provider declines to participate in health care services; prohibits boards and DOH from taking certain disciplinary actions.

This piece of garbage made it out of committee.  I point that out, because previous piles of legislative battery acid I warned about were downplayed because they were merely filed.  I was told, don’t worry about it until a bill makes it out of committee.  This is a fair point.  That approach reduces unnecessary panic.  But this one did.

Shall we worry yet?

4/6/2023 House • Added to Health & Human Services Committee agenda
4/10/2023 House • Favorable with CS by Health & Human Services Committee
4/11/2023 House • Reported out of Health & Human Services Committee
4/12/2023 House • Laid on Table under Rule 7.18(a)
• CS Filed
• 1st Reading (Committee Substitute 2)
4/13/2023 House • Bill referred to House Calendar
• Added to Second Reading Calendar
4/20/2023 House • Bill added to Special Order Calendar (4/25/2023)

Again, there is something called an Equal Protection Clause, but the entirety of this nation slipping into dystopian malevolence hinges on 9 thin black robes.

Members of the Florida House Health and Human Services Committee voted to approve the bill on Monday (10 April), and it will now reportedly head to the full house for consideration.

Speaking to reporters on Monday, house Democratic leader Fentrice Driskell branded the bill dangerous and discriminatory.

“This would allow a healthcare provider or insurer to deny medical care to a patient based on religious, moral or ethical opinions,” she said. “You can imagine how this could be weaponised against the LGBTQ+ community, but could also be abused against abortion, contraception… or any medical procedure.

Doctors, predictably, who took an oath to “first do no harm” are not pleased.

“I think professionals should treat everyone. But if they can’t treat them and be professional and ethical and nonjudgmental…they need to refer them to someone else,” said mental health counselor Dr. Laura Streyffeler.

The bill also says physicians don’t have to refer any patients to someone else. That is a concern for women, minorities and those in the LGBTQ community.

“It’s the prejudice that’s creating the bills. The bills aren’t creating the prejudice,” Dr. Streyffeler concluded.

This bill now goes to a full house that is clearly not playing with a full deck.


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