Pharmacists and Conscientious Objection
Staff of the National Reference Center for Bioethics Literature
In March 2005, a Wisconsin pharmacist’s act of conscience garnered headlines across the United States. After a married woman with four children submitted a prescription for the morning-after pill, the pharmacist, Neil Noesen, not only refused to fill it, but also refused to transfer the prescription to another pharmacist or to return the prescription to the customer. As more such incidents occurred, many states “. . . decided to consider and enact laws setting the bounds of pharmacists’ and other health care workers’ professional obligations” (III, Grady 2006, p. 327).
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News from the National Reference Center for Bioethics Literature (NRCBL) and the National Information Resource on Ethics and Human Genetics (NIREHG) Staff, National Reference Center for Bioethics Literature (2007-12)