Ethics of refusing to provide non-emergent medical care.

So, some friends and I were debating the ethics of this lovely article “Melbourne doctors abortion stance may be punished” which was shared over Twitter earlier today by @broomedocs.

After a couple of hours of debate, for me, it has come down to ‘I don’t have enough information’.

– I think that demanding people to act in, what they believe to be, a morally reprehensible way is not a good idea (TM).
– I think the idea of providing a referal if you are not willing to provide a certain treatment is good in theory, but it is (very slightly) a step too far in prescribing the actions of doctors.
– I think that mandating that doctors provide information that what the patient is looking for is not available here and may be found elsewhere allows conscientious objection without forcing abetment and is enough to morally and ethically discharge a minimal duty of care.
– I think it would be morally reprehensible and ethically unconscionable to deliberately obfuscate access to medical care.

I do not have access to enough facts to know if this doctors actions are ethically right or wrong (at least by my standards outlined above).

I also do not have enough legal knowledge to hold an informed opinion on *all* the relevant laws, or if the quoted law in the article is taken out of context/paraphrased/expanded on in another section/etc, to know if this doctors actions are legally right or wrong.

As to what the doctor was actually objecting too, that is irrelevant. He could have been objecting to giving children vaccines for all that it matters to a debate on the ethics of refusing to provide non-emergent medical care.