Australian doctors against governmental anti-refugee policies

This video from Australia says about itself:

Vigil for Asha enters second night outside Lady Cilento Children’s Hospital

13/02/2016 Brisbane doctors are taking an extraordinary stand to stop a baby girl being sent back to detention in Nauru.

From daily News Line in Britain:

Friday, 19 February 2016

Australian doctors demand ‘humane stance’

IN THE British Medical Journal today, a leading doctor is calling on the Australian government to stop constraining doctors in the care of asylum seekers and refugees, and to adopt a humane stance to people seeking asylum.

David Berger, a doctor at Broome Hospital in Western Australia and a committee member of Doctors4Refugees, is making these calls following the high profile case at The Lady Cilento Hospital in Brisbane.

Paediatricians are refusing to discharge a baby facing deportation to a detention camp after the girl, a daughter of asylum seekers, suffered serious burns at an immigration camp on Nauru island. The Lady Cilento Hospital says the girl will not be released ‘until a suitable home environment is identified’.

Dr Berger explains that despite seeking to ensure the safety of their patient and doing nothing more than following their own ethical code, these doctors risk facing up to two years imprisonment under the 2015 Border Force Act.

Doctors have an ethical code since the time of the Hippocratic physicians nearly 2,500 years ago, he explains, yet this new law ‘compels them to follow the instructions of the Australian government, even if they believe this might be to the detriment of their patients’.

He says this case goes to the heart of the question of ‘duty of the physician’ versus ‘law of the land’, but argues that ‘compliance with the law cannot inoculate the medical practitioner completely against the need to comply with their ethical code’.

He highlights the 2012 Derek Keilloh case in the UK that shows the ‘impossible ethical and legal position doctors now face in Australia . . . as they are caught between the profession’s ethical code, which places patient welfare at the heart of their endeavours, and the law of the country which places unacceptable obstacles in the way of doing so’.

Dr Berger adds that the actions of the Brisbane doctors ‘are not simply a piece of political grandstanding, but the courageous stand of professionals seeking to do the right thing by their patient and to live up to the standards of an ethical code by which they are morally and legally bound and which places patient welfare at its pinnacle’.

‘They are behaving according to the very highest standards of their profession,’ he adds, and calls on the government to repeal the relevant provisions of the Border Force Act and to adopt a ‘humane stance’ towards people seeking asylum.

AUSTRALIAN unions have applauded the community #LetThemStay alliance that forced the Turnbull government to back down on Sunday from sending baby Asha and her family back into detention on Nauru: here.

Despite protests around the country, asylum seekers who were brought to Australia for medical treatment after being detained in the Australian-run “offshore processing” facilities on Nauru and Papua New Guinea’s Manus Island face being sent back to these oppressive camps: here.

Just over a week ago, Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull set the stage for a rare “double dissolution” election, involving all seats in both parliamentary houses on July 2. The move is a desperate bid to break the logjam in the Senate—the parliamentary upper house—where opposition parties and so-called independents have used their majority to block key budget measures: here.

4 thoughts on “Australian doctors against governmental anti-refugee policies

  1. Pingback: Panama Papers, big corruption scandal | Dear Kitty. Some blog

  2. Pingback: Australian government, stop imprisoning refugees, Papua New Guinea court decides | Dear Kitty. Some blog

  3. Pingback: Australian anti-refugee policies criticized | Dear Kitty. Some blog

  4. Pingback: Danish MPs banned from Australian refugee prison camp | Dear Kitty. Some blog

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