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Legislation infringes on patient-physician relationship

Release Date: February 20, 2012
Contact: Lisa Hildebrand - 608.442.3765 lisa.hildebrand@wismed.org

Madison, Wis. – The Wisconsin Medical Society warns that legislation scheduled for a vote in the State Senate on Tuesday would infringe on the patient-physician relationship while enacting requirements for providing medical care that do not match with currently accepted best practice. Senate Bill 306 also places an unneeded and unprecedented burden on Wisconsin physicians and women, the Society said in testimony opposing the legislation.

“The proposed legislation would make it difficult for women to obtain certain medical procedures, creating many more requirements than best medical practices currently require,” said Society President-Elect Tosha Wetterneck, MD, MS. “The Society is concerned whenever government inserts itself into medical care decision-making – no matter the medical procedure in question.”

The bill interferes with the patient-physician relationship by requiring onerous procedural hurdles, and physicians could face criminal charges even when caring for patients in ways accepted by the latest medical science, Dr. Wetterneck said.

“The Society opposes government attempting to mandate specific medical procedures or protocols,” Dr. Wetterneck added. “Such requirements interfere with a physician’s individual judgment on what is best for that physician’s patient and almost certainly will fall behind what is considered best practice.”

With nearly 12,500 members dedicated to the best interests of their patients, the Society is the largest association of medical doctors in the state and has been a trusted source for health policy leadership since 1841. For details, visit www.wisconsinmedicalsociety.org.