Clinicians are voting for change

Infuriated more so than inspired by the current administration’s ongoing mishandling of the COVID-19 pandemic… No, wait, mishandling isn’t a strong enough word. Bungling? Or worse than that. I feel the need to infer malicious intent: Perverting, perhaps? Yes, let’s go with that!

Infuriated more so than inspired by the current administration’s malicious perverting of the COVID-19 pandemic, a group of my MGH colleagues and I co-wrote a strongly worded and scrupulously referenced OpEd titled The Medical Community is Obligated to Endorse Biden, published in Visible Magazine this weekend.

Many other respected medical entities have denounced pervert-in-chief Trump, such as the New England Journal of Medicine in this excellent essay Dying in a Leadership Vacuum and the American Medical Association Statement on Ongoing Attacks on Physicians Treating COVID Patients. But few went so far as we did when we stated:

President Trump’s mishandling of the pandemic and egregious lies make one thing clear: healthcare workers must support Biden – vocally and undeniably. Those who don’t are risking patient lives.

The essay is brief but packed with data and sources. We list off many– not all– of this administrations’ lies and harmful actions that have worsened the pandemic for us all. Here’s how it starts off:

As we’re living through one of the deadliest events in American history, Mr. Trump continues to undermine our pandemic response. Recently, Trump accused American healthcare providers of falsely reporting deaths due to COVID-19 for financial gain. This is an infuriating lie, condemned by myriad medical societies,but only the latest demonstration of how Trump himself is the number one source of COVID-19 misinformation.

There’s more, oh so much more. And it’s all true.

It’s also true that healthcare professionals can be reluctant to talk politics, for fear of offending their patients. And, we all agree on our respective ethical guidelines:

To be clear, ideology or politics has no place in the exam room. Doctors’ and nurses’ codes of ethics explicitly state that political differences should never interfere with the care we provide to our patients. We treat everyone equally, even those who would deny the very science behind the treatments we have to offer. This will never change.

Still, I’m thankful to work in an area where my patients openly express views that mirror my own. We’re all suffering from the same lack of a decent federal pandemic response, and eager for change. We’re thankful to The OpEd Project for helping us craft the piece and get it published!

So vote, vote, vote for a new administration. Vote for Biden and Harris. I certainly did!

Photo by Glen Carrie on Unsplash

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