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Jehovah’s Witness Claims Surgeon Refused to Operate

Frank M. Brown, MD, an orthopedic surgeon at the Asheville (N.C.) VA Medical Center, was sued by a Jehovah’s Witness named William Clinton, who claimed Dr. Brown refused to operate on him and thereby violated his First Amendment right to freedom of religion. Though the case raises some interesting questions, it was dismissed by a U.S. District Court for reasons having little or nothing to do with the religious component. For one, Dr. Brown was protected by the Qualified Immunity Doctrine, which insulates federal employees from personal liability under most circumstances. Also, in the absence of legislative remedies, plaintiffs may sue for constitutional violations involving the Fourth, Fifth and Eighth Amendments, but they can’t do so for First Amendment violations, according to the Supreme Court.

http://www.outpatientsurgery.net/outpatient-surgery-news-and-trends/general-surgical-news-and-reports/jehovah-s-witness-claims-surgeon-refused-to-operate–08-21-15